And we’re not talking about your partner or spouse!
Early on in the new year,
get rid of some of the clutter that have become life’s little annoyances.
YEI gives you tips on how to declutter in 20-minute time bursts!
Generally, the YEI team are not great believers in New Year’s Resolutions. However, it kind of makes sense to start off a new year on a good footing, and decluttering seems to be top of mind for many of us who are of an age where our belongings are no longer terribly relevant to us. The stuff that we have collected over the years is fast becoming one of life’s little annoyances – it’s time to purge and get rid of the clutter and live a more minimalist life…
Here are some great tips to get you started on your decluttering journey in this New Year…
Set your timer
Declutter in 20-minute time bursts! Your new year sorting and culling spree will not seem quite like a chore or burden, and it’s amazing what you can do in 20 minutes! Keep the momentum up though in order to see your way clear to a clean, clear, minimalistic space.
Wrapping paper, ribbon and all things gift-wise
We’re all guilty of this. Present-wrapping and then shoving all the unusable scraps of paper and ribbon bits back into your gift-wrap drawer. Go through the gift-wrap drawer and using an empty Carlton towel roll or loo roll, roll up your usable left-over gift wrap and ribbon bits, and store it neatly. Turf everything else that’s too small to use.
Festive food and pantry extras
We all over-do it in the festive season when it comes to holiday feasts and Christmas baking sessions. It’s inevitable that there is surplus in our pantries. Instead of packing it away until next festive season (half packets of cherries and dates, unused Christmas pudding, excess dried fruit etc etc), why not fill up a bag with all the left-over bits and pieces and give it away to a charitable organisation.
By the time you read this, we are way beyond Twelfth Night, traditionally when one is expected to pack away Christmas decorations until the following year. But consider getting the Christmas decorations storage box down and get rid of those items that didn’t get a look in this year – decorations that never made it out of the box on to the tree or the shelf. Why let these languish in the storage box for another year. How about tossing them to someone else who might enjoy using them next Christmas, testing the lights to ensure they work and ensure you only keep well-loved, treasured Christmas decs.
It’s likely you have had hoards of visitors over the festive season, and your linen cupboard is a right royal mess. You’d probably give your eye teeth to open a neat and orderly linen cupboard. Get rid of all the linen and bath/hand towels plus accessories you don’t use – a local charity will be most happy to receive your unwanted linen.
Now remember, that Rome wasn’t built in a day, so you can’t tackle everything at once.
Stick to your timer rule and you’ll find that decluttering becomes something you look forward to, not that arduous chore that will put you off decluttering for the rest of 2019.
And don’t forget, the less stuff you have, the less time you need to spend cleaning.
Now wouldn’t that be a treat?!
YEI spoke to two decluttering experts
and asked what tips they could give you once you start decluttering:
Heidi Meyer of Cloud 9 Organised recommends that you gather your supplies, narrow your focus and get into a ruthless frame of mind!
Gather your supplies
Before starting, gather your supplies. This helps to save time and get the job done quickly. Consider having:
- Different colour heavy duty bags e.g. green for paper recycling, clear for plastic recycling, and orange for soft donations such as clothes and linen;
- Boxes for fragile items for donations;
- And containers which you can categorise and pack away the smaller possessions onto shelves.
Narrow down your focus
Don’t haul out everything out of a cupboard. Focus on one drawer, one shelf, one category, one room at a time. If you don’t, you’ll start feeling overwhelmed very quickly.
Get rid of stuff no longer needed, loved or wanted. This also applies to stuff given to you by someone. Do not get distracted. The less we have, the more we use. Be very critical of items wanting to be kept and don’t be offended if your children don’t want your sentimental pieces. Someone else might love and use them. Toss broken or incomplete items.
Where to take donations?
Your domestic helper, an orphanage, a family member, a friend, a shelter or welfare. It creates a sense of wellbeing if you know that your unwanted items will make someone else happy and will be used. Load up these items that you want to donate away as soon as possible so that they don’t creep back into your home.
All too much for you?
Cloud 9 Organised
Professional Organiser / Speaker / Trainer
Located in Gauteng, but travels nationally
Mobile: 073 621 3316
Cloud 9 offers a senior discount