Saturday, January 2, 2010

No cost organizing-Tip #1 DECLUTTER

With the new year here it is very tempting to try and buy your way to organized (I have fallen into this trap myself many times).  Buying all the rubbermaid containers in the world does not mean you are organized (just check our basement).  My husband loves to buy containers and build shelves.  That is his solution to the problem of how to get organized and for some reason it just doesn't work that way.  You have to be the person putting things in those containers and on those shelves in an organized fashio.

Now so you don't all think I am a hypocrite I will certainly buy things to help organized my life.  Sometimes they are inexpensive and sometimes they can be costly (think CA closets in my dream world!).  Today going to start a series of posts on NO COST organizing.  There are so many things you can do around your house to make it more organized that do not cost a penny.

Today's tip is to declutter your home one step at a time.  It costs nothing to throw things away.  The more STUFF you get rid of the less containers you need to store things.

Set a goal for yourself to declutter everyday.  My personal decluttering goal will be 15-30 min daily depending what is going on that day.  Now this is just a daily declutter that I am hoping to form a habit (what does it take-21 days?).  There are SO many areas around my house that could use a good declutter.  Now do NOT mistake this for organizing.  These declutter sessions are focused on getting rid  of stuff that sits around your house taking up precious space.  It is not about organizing (other than moving things to where they belong.  Remember the more you get rid of the less you have to organize!

Label three boxes:
1) Give away:  Anything you plan on donating to a group or individual.  Have a space in your basement or garage to store this box and write a date on when you will get rid of it.  I suggest you write a date 30 days from your first decluttering session (at the latest).  If you know you will be going to Goodwill or the Salvation Army on a specific date write it on the box so your give away box does not become one more example of clutter in your house.

2) Throw away:  Line this box with a garbage or grocery bag.  After your decluttering session toss the contents of the box into the garbage and never look back!

3) Put away:  This is for anything that does not belong where it is.  Spend 5 quick minutes after your decluttering session putting things where they belong.

You may want to prioritize which room/area of your house in most desperate need of decluttering.  For me it would be the office or basement.  Set your timer for the amount of time you have to delutter and go to it.  It won't be so overwhelming when you have an end in sight.  I suggest 15-30 min, but if you can only spare 5 or 10 it is better than nothing.

I am now off to set my timer and head to my office.  Try it out and tell me what you think.


  1. This is great advice! I tell people to do this all the time! I love going through a room and getting rid of everything we dont need!

  2. Great advice!

    I'm a huge de-clutter"er" (if that makes sense). My family always teases me that I don't hold onto anything. :)