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Have you been working hard at eliminating clutter? Are you now shifting from tossing clutter to keeping clutter away for good? If so, these 10 ways to keep clutter away for good should help.
These clutter controlling steps are ones I have been using lately to keep my own clutter from growing while I was tossing and now from growing again. The 10 steps are vital for keeping your clutter gone for good!
10 Ways To Keep Clutter Away For Good
1. Make And Keep A Decluttering Routine
- Toss one item a day
- Declutter for 15 minutes each day
- Fill a box a month with items for the thrift store
- Spend an hour each weekend decluttering
- Pick a room a month to sort through from top to bottom
Above are five different decluttering routines that can help you to not only make your home clutter free, but to keep it that way. There are more ways; the key is to find the way that works for you and stick with it–even when you don’t feel like it.
2. Open Your Doors
The anticipation of having a guest in our homes tends to make us see building piles of clutter that we might otherwise be blind to. So if you want to keep your home clutter free, invite someone over at least once a month or better yet, twice a month. That way clutter won’t have time to build.
3. Stay Accountable
You are not the only one out there struggling with clutter, join a facebook group that holds you accountable to keep working at obtaining and keeping a clutter free home. I have one called Snail Pace Clutter Removers and it has some very active and encouraging members. (click here to hop over to Facebook and join)
4. Give Collections Firm Limits
Love books? Put them in a small bookcase and when they start overflowing those shelves sort through them and toss until you have room for at least six books or more in the bookcase. Love knitting? Buy a good sized plastic tote with a lid to store your future projects in a closet and a basket to store your current project close to where you knit and don’t let yourself collect more yarn at one time than what fits in it. Hate going through receipts? place a small bowl or basket near where you tend to throw them and when they start to overflow discipline yourself to take few minutes to go through them, keeping only those you really need. Toss or shred the rest and then file those you kept.
5. Set A Resale Goal
- Host an annual yard sale
- Place an item a week in a Facebook Buy and Sell Group
- Hold a weekend Craiglist Blitz once a season
- Hold an eBay listing Saturday once a month
Some clutter does have significant value and if you are on a tight budget, it can be tough to just give those items away to charity. If you really do need the money from the items you no longer need, then I suggest that you create a reselling plan that works for your life and stick to it.
6. Stop Buying
Yes, I know you can’t stop buying thing altogether. Food gets eaten, clothes wear out, things break–but chances are if you have a clutter problem, you have been buying more items than you really need.
Before you buy anything, ask yourself these questions:
- Do I really need this?
- Where will I store it?
- Is something I already own serving the same purpose?
- Do I have the cash to buy it right now?
7. Stop Accepting (Most) Free Items
As a blogger who also writes about thrifty topics, I can’t tell you with a clear conscious that you should avoid all free items you are offered. After all, I love my free books from Tyndale Rewards and my free magazines from Recycle Bank. I also find the free samples I acquire from various sources to come in handy.
However, there are some free items you should stop accepting–but only you can decide which ones they are. For me I no longer accept free flyers, brochures, water bottles, plastic cups, and I even turn down the odd free t-shirt. I know that once I get home these free items turn immediately into clutter.
8. Make Rewards Moments, Not Things
If you are the type of person who loves to reward yourself for a job well done, you might want to spend a bit of time thinking about the clutter you are creating with your rewards. Perhaps instead of a new journal you know you won’t really use you could reward yourself with a trip to get your nails done. Perhaps instead of yet another kitchen accessory you could reward yourself with an afternoon of hiking with a friend. Spend sometime brainstorming rewards that won’t create clutter in your home or on your hips and it truly will be a reward instead of something that was in the moment, but soon became a frustration.
9. Ask Others For Clutter Free Gifts
Another source of clutter for many is gifts from friends and family. If those you love do ask for gift suggestions, steer them toward items that won’t become clutter in your home. Do you love lighting scented candles, but you rarely splurge on them? Add them to your gift list. Have you always wanted to try the local climbing wall but never got around to it? Put a gift certificate to it on your gift list. Do you love a certain coffee, but rarely treat yourself to it? Add it to your gift list.
1o. If It Takes Less Than A Minute To Attack, Do It Right Way
I really struggle with this one, but when I stick to this rule our home’s paper clutter stays fairly tamed. Basically if you see a pile of whatever building somewhere in your home and you know it would take you less than a minute to return the items to their proper places or to recycle or trash them, then stop what you are doing and do it.
Obviously you can’t do this all day long or you would never get to the priorities on your to do list. However, typically there are only a few times during a day that you might see a pile you can knock out in under a minute and my guess is you can make up for those few minutes each day without it getting in the way of completing your main tasks.
How do you keep clutter from piling up?
3 more posts that will help you bust through your clutter:
- How To Start Decluttering When You Feel Overwhelmed
- 25+ Declutter Posts To Help You Say Goodbye To Clutter Forever
- How To Declutter Even When You Don’t Feel Like It
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