For many people, decluttering can be one of the hardest parts of the organizing process.
Sometimes it’s hard to determine and rationalize which items to keep, toss or donate.
Here are some questions to ask yourself to help you edit more efficiently and ensure that only the items most important to you are taking up real estate in your home.
When’s the last time I used this item?
If the last time you’ve used something is over a year ago, consider why. If the item is supposed to be functional and has not been used, consider donating it. If the item is memorabilia and holds a special place in your heart, keep it in a designated place for sentimental items.
Does this item make me happy?
If the answer is yes, then keep it!
If you’re on the fence, or if your answer is a definitive “no” then consider saying goodbye or donating it.
Do I have multiples of this item?
Oftentimes, we find ourselves purchasing the same thing over and over. Do you have 12 white tee shirts? Consider keeping the “best of the best” and letting go of the white tee shirts, or other duplicate items that are more worn down and have lived their best lives and served you well.
One of the great things about getting organized is that once everything has a proper home, it’s so much easier to take inventory and shop your home! This helps ensure you’re using everything with intention and helps you avoid over-purchasing!
Would I buy this item again?
If the answer is “yes” keep it if it’s in good condition!
If the answer is “no” and the item is in good condition and you still use it, then keep it and let it go once it’s worn down. If the answer is “no” and you don’t use the item, say goodbye to it!
Sometimes in organizing, one person’s trash or donations is truly someone else’s treasure and that item you never used could be valuable to someone else!
Would I miss this item if it got lost?
If the answer is “yes,” keep the item and make sure it’s in prime real estate so you can easily access it.
If the answer is “no” consider saying goodbye to the item or make a mental note not to replace it once it has lived its full life.
If the item needs fixing, will you actually repair it?
If your answer is “yes” then keep it and get it repaired asap – unless the cost to repair the item is more than the cost of the item itself. Then, consider throwing away the item in question and replacing it outright. This is a perfect moment to be realistic with yourself – if you’ve been saying for years you’re going to get a certain item fixed but haven’t actually done it, perhaps it’s time to let it go instead!
If the answer is “no” consider donating the item, or use it until it has reached the end of its functional life, and then throw it away once it has reached that point.
Would someone else enjoy this item more?
People often feel guilty about throwing away items that they’re not using because it feels like a waste of money. Many people forget about the magic of donating – where an item that no longer is useful to you or makes you happy can really brighten someone else’s day.
If you’re holding onto an item just to hold onto it, consider donating it and giving it a better life with someone else!
Once you’ve gotten organized, be intentional about mindful thinking and shopping. After you declutter, avoid clutter from piling up again by purchasing and only bringing home items you absolutely need and love.
If you have bins designated to contain different categories of items, don’t let them overflow! For example, if your bin of winter scarves is overflowing, declutter and only keep the best of the best.
We often see a change in how clients think and shop after they get organized!
If you need some extra help but aren’t sure where to start, reach out to Horderly to schedule a consultation for in-home or virtual organizing.
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