After fear, a major cause of procrastination is clutter. It’s a vicious cycle because it’s easy to procrastinate over clearing out clutter simply because it can be too hard to know where to start.
Last year, I helped to downsize a house from four bedrooms to one in a very short space of time. It was a major undertaking but we succeeded because we had a plan.
Clutter affects every aspect of your life. It affects your productivity. It affects your abundance. It affects your health. Clutter will keep you from moving forward. It’s important to free up the space around you and let your space breathe.
The #1 thing to remember if you are helping someone else declutter is – don’t just go in and start chucking their things out. People become attached to things and it’s important to respect that. Throwing things out because you don’t see the importance in them can have a severe emotional impact on the person who they belong to.
Decluttering can be a very physical and emotional experience for many people. It is important to always have empathy for any person you are helping but, most of all have a plan and be firm but reasonable.
It is important that the person you are helping feels in control. If you are the one decluttering, be firm with yourself and take positive action. Remember, you are 100% responsible for your life so it’s important to take control.
1. Start with one single area to declutter.
If you have a large area, break it up into sections and start with one section.
Designate an area for items that you are keeping and another area for items that are going to the op shop. Have another area for things that are going to the tip (a skip or a trailer) and another for items you can sell (keeping items to sell is optional. If you don’t wish to do this, send these items to the op shop).
2. As you assess each item, ask yourself these questions.
a) Have I used this recently?
b) Is it of any benefit to me right now?
If the answer to both of these questions is no, the item needs to find a new home.
If you haven’t worn clothes in the last year (giving consideration for seasons), send them on their merry way, especially if they don’t fit you anymore.
It’s time to let someone else love them.
3. Put the items to go to the second-hand shop in your car and deliver them there within 24 hours.
If you need to make several trips, set aside a time to do them one after the other. Do the same for any items that need to be taken to the rubbish tip.
If you have a major decluttering project, ensure these three steps are finished before moving on to the next area.
4. If you have decided to sell some items, organize for this to be done as soon as possible.
If it’s going to take more than a week or if they don’t sell, give the items to the second-hand shop. Remember, they can sell them and you’ll be helping others.
Important step to remember!
- Clutter keeps you in the past and stops you from moving forward. It’s important to free up the space around you to let new abundance come into your life. The past is done. It’s not going anywhere. You don’t have to continue to live in it. There’s so much more waiting for you to allow it in.
- Don’t give any energy to the thought that an item may be of use to you in the future if it is of no benefit to you right now. It is absolutely guaranteed that you will need something after you have thrown it out or given it away, but keeping things ‘just in case’ is only working to keep you burdened by your clutter. It is time to detach and move on.
- It is important to move at a steady pace when decluttering. Don’t spend too much time deciding whether or not to keep something. If you have to think too much about something, chances are you probably don’t need it.