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If you are knee-deep in your decluttering journey, you might be thinking to yourself, “All this hard work is paying off, but how do I stop accumulating stuff and end clutter forever?”
After all, you don’t want to spend hours upon hours tossing stuff only to have it reappear again and have to spend more time dealing with it! If this is where you are at, these tips should help you keep your home clutter-free forever.
How To Stop Accumulating Stuff: End Clutter Forever!
Don’t Shop Without A List
Don’t shop without a list is a famous saving money tip, but it also works for reducing clutter. If an item didn’t get on your need to buy list, chance are its clutter and you need to place it back on the store shelf and leave it there.
Have An Attitude Of Gratitude
Being grateful for what you have already leads to contentment and when you are content you tend to have less “I want it” attacks. Those attacks breed clutter.
Not sure how to begin being more grateful? Start with keeping a gratitude journal.
Turn Off Temptation
What things in your life tempt you to buy more? These will be different things for everyone. It could be a particular TV show that makes you run to the local home goods store for new knick knacks. Or perhaps that magazine that makes you run to the mall to grab this season’s must have clothing items. Or maybe it is your habit of hitting Target after a rough day with a fancy coffee in one hand and a cart in the other (or perhaps that one was just me).
Stop these things as much as possible. Replace them with healthier habits. For instance, I now exercise my stress away instead of shopping.
Practice The Art Of Waiting
Are you sure you need that new outfit? Walk away from it and give yourself 24 hours to think about it. Do you need another throw cushion? Leave it in your virtual cart for 24 hours while you think it over.
Waiting stops impulse buying in its tracks. Chances are a good percentage of the clutter you tossed from your home while decluttering was from impulse buys.
Buy For Who You Are Now–Not For Who You Want To Be Later
I use to be the worst offender of buying for later. I had enough crafting projects lined up to last me until retirement. With three children in the home, I rarely had time to craft. I was buying things for a life I didn’t live.
Now I ask myself, “will I get to this within the next 30 days?” then I say, “be honest,” (because I tend to be a bit too ambitious) and 99% of the time the supplies for that dream project don’t end up in my shopping cart.
If It Isn’t A Need, You Are Not Saving Money–No Matter How Good The Sale Is
Bargain hunters, this one is for you. Sometimes you can get so hung up on how cheap an item is you don’t realize that not buying it all together would save even more money. If you don’t need it, you are wasting money–no matter how low the price–and the purchase will be clutter. Put that 95% off candy bowl down–you don’t need it.
Find New Ways To Unwind
As I stated above, I used to shop merely to get out of the house and enjoy some “me” time. Now I go outside and go for a walk, run or bike ride. Better for my home, my wallet and my health.
Ask Questions Before You Buy:
- Do I already own something that does what this does?
- Where will I store it?
- Do I have time to do the maintenance it requires?
- Will it add value to my life?
- Do I have the money for this purchase?
Think purchases through, don’t let impulse take over. Remember: impulse buys usually end up being clutter.
Create Firm Stuff Boundaries:
- one in one out
- collections can only fit one shelf
- clothing must fit in the drawers neatly
- Have a set amount of hangers and don’t allow yourself to buy any more
Pick what clutter boundaries work for you and keep them.
Develop Good Daily Habits
- Put stuff away right away
- Deal with mail the minute you collect it
- Have a daily clean up time
I am not very good with points one and two on the list above, but I am good at keeping number 3. I have three daily clean up times worked into my regular schedule, one mid-morning, one mid-afternoon, and one after dinner. They are only 5 to 15 minutes long, but they prevent the clutter hot spots in our home from getting overly cluttered. But that is me and my personality. If you are better at points one and two, a one day tidy up of your house will be all you need to keep clutter piles from growing back.
Believe It Is Possible To Be And Stay Clutter Free
To make something happen, you have first to believe that it is possible. If you have lived in a cluttered home for years, you might not think that you could ever keep a clutter-free home and you won’t until you believe you can.
Believing you can keep a clutter-free home isn’t an impossible dream–it is something that is obtainable by all human beings. You deserve it! You are worth it! You can do it!
If you are struggling to get your home clutter-free and keep it that way, you will find the strength to keep up the battle through knowing others are in it too. Join my Snail Pacing Clutter Removers Facebook Group for motivation and support to keep tossing that clutter and keep it away for good.
3 More Posts On Clutter Management You Are Going To Want To Read:
- 52 Weeks To A Simplified Home: A Realistic Decluttering Plan For Busy Families
- How To Start Decluttering When You Feel Overwhelmed
- How One Word Can Motivate You To Toss That Clutter Until It Is All Gone
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