If you have a goal to get excess clutter out of your life then I have the perfect challenge series for you. At the beginning of every month I post suggested items for you to declutter from your home. The best thing about this challenge is that we’re all working together for the end goal of ridding the clutter out of our lives. If you miss any of the challenges you can always go back and do them at any time. I’ll have them linked at the bottom of this post. Now it’s time to declutter!
This is the 7th month of the challenge so whether it’s your first time joining or your seventh I hope this helps you clear the clutter from your life. What better way to start the new year than to reclaim your space.
Decluttering in January
Old Calendars and Planners – I like to transfer important information from my old planner to my new one: birthdays, phone numbers, addresses, passwords, etc. but once that’s done I toss the old one. I know some people use their planners as a journal so if that’s the case store them all together in a small lidded tote.
Bookcases – We decluttered books a few months ago but didn’t touch on the bookcases themselves. What else do you have on your bookcases that need to be cleared out? I suggest taking everything off the shelves besides the books you’ve already decluttered. Don’t put anything back on the shelves unless you need it there or you really love it. You can also use decorative boxes to hide necessary things that aren’t very pretty.
Wall Decor – You would be surprised how much more comfortable your home can feel with just removing a few pieces of wall decor. Too much stuff can be overwhelming but leaving some empty space can make it feel more restful and inviting.
Entryway – The entryway is and should be a place to put things as you enter or leave the house, but that doesn’t mean it has to look cluttered and disorganized. Only have necessary pieces in this area. A good storage unit whether it’s a cabinet or a bench with baskets should be able to hold everything you need. You will also need a place for small things like keys and mail. Since this area can tend to get cluttered it’s important to have a place for everything. Make a list of things you need to make this space function then remove everything else.
Storage Totes and Bins – Since we’ve been decluttering for several months now you probably have extra storage totes. Who would have thought organizing supplies could be clutter but they can be. As I declutter I like to use the extra totes as boxes for donations. It’s a good way to get rid of totes and them still be useful. I usually always have 2 extra storage totes just in case though.
Free Promotional Items – Why are we so attracted to free things whether we need them or not? I think we grab them because we think it’s clever or we might use it or someone just handed it to us and we felt obligated to take it. First things first, decide if you really want it or will use it and don’t take it if you won’t. Now for the things you already have. If you haven’t used it, get rid of it. It’s as simple as that.
Desk – Set aside a little time for this task. It might take a while depending on how big your desk is and how long it’s been since you’ve cleaned it out. Start with the desk top and clear off everything that doesn’t belong. I try to keep very little on my desk top: laptop, printer, planner, and pencil cup. Everything else goes in a drawer or on a shelf. Of course those can get cluttered too, so go through them drawer by drawer and toss, shred, or move anything that doesn’t belong. This is also a good time to take note of supplies that need to be replenished.
Old Cleaning Rags – They’re rags for a reason but even rags need to be tossed at some point. Decide how many you really need and toss the ones that are the most worn. When you have more holes than material it’s time to toss it.
Christmas Cards and Letters – Who has a bin full of cards and letters they never look at? You can recycle some of the cards into gift tags by using a punch or cutting out a decorative shape. You can display the family photos or put them in a book to look at year after year. Respond to the letters and toss them. If it’s an extra special letter you can keep it or take a photo of it.
Formal Wear – I’m talking about formal wear from high school or years ago that’s been in the back of your closet. There are many local high schools or charities that accept formal wear and give to students or young adults for special occasions.
Kids Craft Supplies – I always gave my kids my excess craft supplies but even that can build up if they don’t use it fast enough. Designate a box or tote to hold their supplies and don’t exceed it. Toss things that aren’t being used or things that are basically trash.
Old Receipts – Some receipts need to be saved because of warranties. Staple the receipt to the warranty and keep it in a file for as long as you have the product or until the warranty expires. Keep daily receipts just until you check with your online banking to make sure it has cleared for the correct amount, then you can shred or toss it. Keep other receipts until you know if you are going to keep the product or return it. If it’s a gift for someone, give them the gift receipt.
Sleeping Bags/ Blankets/ Pads – Discard any sleeping bags that have broken zippers or are torn. Also any pads or blankets that are too worn or ripped. I usually save one blanket that my husband can use for when he works on the car.
Mismatched Tupperware – Nothing is worse than putting something in a container then not being able to find the lid for it. It doesn’t take much time to sort through the containers and lids to make sure they all match. Toss the ones that don’t have a match. It’s that quick and simple.
No Spend Month – Why not designate January a no spend month! It’s much easier to keep clutter out if you never bring it in. Of course you have to pay your bills and buy groceries, but I’m talking about any additional spending. The bonus is that you’ll also save some money and not have added clutter.
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