So you went for decluttering only to find after a while that you cannot boast of much success – you are still surrounded by uncontrollable things. It seems that some mistakes in the process are indicated; now, what decluttering mistakes can people make?
Starting out emboldened by unrealistic visions
Netflix viewers may believe that Marie Kondo’s feats at getting rid of stuff and practically creating a new home out of an overstuffed abode in less than an hour is a routine implementation. Actually, proper decluttering can be time-consuming.
In order to effect miraculous changes, you will have to commit yourself to making a good plan and sticking to it faithfully even at the expense of some heart-wringing. Make sure you begin the process with the right, positive mindset, think about success and enjoyment of a home without forgotten and unused items.
Leaving things to be sold or donated for unmapped future
To qualify for decluttering properly you have to rapidly remove all unnecessary items from your place. If you just throw them in a box to be disposed of at some later date and never get round to emptying the box, the sole benefit is you got them out of the way.
Unless you offered them at a garage sale soon enough, you were simply making a collection. It may happen that things will be slowly coming back to their former places from the box after a while.
Ways to ensure that rejected items are not collecting somewhere:
Dispose of the stuff immediately or tick a day for getting them to a thrift store as soon as you can.
Having decided to donate the stuff, place the box in your car making a mental note to leave it with the chosen charity on the very next day.
If you think you are likely to forget about it, stick a note on your dressing table or in your car reminding you to specify some time for the visit one of these days.
For items to be sold at a garage sale, put things in different boxes, similar ones together, and write the date when they are to be offered. If you are unable to make it in the specified time and not likely to sell the stuff soon, donate it to get it off your hands and avoid bother.
Arrange for decluttering in several similar areas at once
So you decided to take a shot at doing up your home up and down? If you feel the rush of energy, don’t start believing you will turn the place upside down in one go. You will feel overwhelmed right at the start. You will be better off with a plan and tackle area after area looking around for something you use but rarely.
Choose smaller areas – or allot some twenty minutes first to see how much you can do. On the other hand, your plan can suggest going by category.
Beginning like this, in a short time, you will get the knack of it and an understanding of how the process goes and how much time it can require. Now you can make good thorough plans.
Begin decluttering by organizing
Setting about organizing is about the worst mistake there can be! Don’t begin with purchasing baskets for storage – that would mean that the stuff is going to remain inside! Besides, some things will not fit, and the baskets themselves may become cluttering items as unsuitable for their purpose.
Before you know what items you are going to dispose of, you can’t know what kind of baskets you will need. So let go of this idea and get down to removing the cluttering items to one place. Then, after a while, sort the needless things out, make up your mind what exactly you are going to do with them – only then it can be necessary to get some baskets or other containers.
Are the sentimental items going to stop you?
Things endowed with sentimental value can provide a major roadblock during decluttering – or kill the very idea of decluttering from the start. They are likely to cause a strong emotional reaction which will turn you away from getting things done.
If you have a lot of those and expect to be hindered by them, leave them for the last. You will be able to score some quick victories and get encouraged with success – it will make you better prepared to handle the sentimentally-loaded items with a higher objectivity.
Evaluating your uncluttered stuff
You paid for each item back then, so it’s an understandable desire to give them back their original price. This consideration – be ready – can make it difficult to part with the most costly things even if they are very cluttersome.
In this case, a mind shift is what the doctor ordered. Forget about the money you paid, regard it as a waste of money. What you paid is long gone out of your budget, but now this particular item takes up space, requires attention during the cleanups, can actually cost you extra for keeping. The more reasons for disposal, really!
Holding on to things for (probable) future use
True, not everybody is inclined to a minimalistic way of thinking. Maybe you look around your place and don’t see anything disposable. Most often it applies to clothing that is for your thinner self; maybe there will come a day when you fit in them again?
Think back to when you used it (them) last: if it is longer than half a year ago – or even a year ago? – probably the “in case” approach can no longer apply to the clutter. Get thinking about when and how you may need the stuff in the future – will it be feasible? Or, if your times of need will be few and far between, you would be better off to borrow the thing?
Consider the area that annoys most
Suppose you have gone through your kitchen decluttering, but when you enter the bathroom you encounter a lot of unsorted stuff. It can take a mite off the pleasure of your success, the realization that there still are things to be done.
To remain strongly motivated you need to enjoy the headway, see the obvious results of your attempts. So your best bet would be to attack the room that is the most annoying; it is sure to provide a lot of tasks, so you may need to divide it into zones that would succumb easier. This way you will remove the irritation and stay assured that the rest of the job will be easier.
Choose the time when you are in the right frame of mind
You can fall into the pit of setting about decluttering when your mind is not on the process. As soon as you find you have other things weighing on your mind, or you are hungry, worn out, lacking enthusiasm – postpone the job until you can tackle it with all your physical and mental efforts.
The wrong time when you are indisposed will stifle your resolution quickly; if you persist, the work may prove ineffective. Also, you may feel guilty if you put aside other more important commitments in order to fulfil your schedule.
Refrain from doing it when you are defocused, make yourself happier by attending to more urgent matters and reschedule decluttering for the time you know you will be free.