Sunday, September 13, 2009
Ok, we all know we have more stuff than we need. Just look at my storage room above. It is a small space under a flight of stairs, and do you see that bike? Yep, bought about a year and a half ago, it has been put in storage and never used. It was bought so my husband could ride it to work and reduce our petrol bill. Only problem, there are no showers at his work for him to shower after riding, rendering this great bike unused. And my darling husband still will not part with it!
See the picture? That is boxes of stuff for me to sell. They also have the packing items, like bubble wrap and prepaid satchels, but essentially it is stuff to sell. Why is it still sitting, week after week? Because I am lazy! But I am getting into it, I promise.
But, that is all beside the point. Since I have decided to buy in bulk everything I possibly can, I have been looking at ways to create more space in the unit we are in, which led me to de-cluttering.
I have been de-cluttering all year. Before we moved into this unit I got rid of lots of things. Actually, I have been downsizing what we have for 2 years. We moved from a 3 bedroom house with a rumpus room, garage, large yard etc... to a small 2 bedroom unit, no garage or storage. I got rid of a lot by having a garage sale and giving stuff away, yet we still had so much stuff. Now we have moved to a 1 bedroom unit, and whilst in the 2 bedroom unit we accumulated more stuff we had no room for and now need to get rid of things.
You see, my husband seems to be great at buying stuff he wants, but does not use. I have been selling it and made quite a bit of money. It is easier to part with other peoples stuff than our own though.
This time though, I have been getting ruthless. I do not need everything I have and whilst I can not get rid of my husbands things, I can severely cut down on what I have.
Here are some tips on de-cluttering
1.) Do 1 section at a time. Do not pull everything out of everywhere, because you will get overwhelmed and the task will seem huge and not get done properly, if at all.
2.) Be ruthless. Do you really need it? Does it get used or is there something it is definitely going to be used for in the future? If not, get rid of it. Some people say to throw away any clothes you have not worn in 6 months and that sort of thing. I disagree, because there are many circumstances where this would cost you money. Such as pregnancy, varying seasons, weight gain and loss. I gained a lot of weight with my 2 pregnancies, which is now coming off, and had I thrown away clothes that did not fit me last year, I would have to be buying clothes now that I am losing the weight.
3.) Use boxes. When I am de-cluttering I have 4 boxes, 1 for stuff I will sell, 1 for stuff I will donate, it is good still, but I don’t think I can sell it on eBay, but it is not rubbish, 1 for rubbish and 1 for things that belong in a different area. I use the last box to stop me walking all over the house returning items to their rightful home. It saves a lot of time.
4.) Set goal areas. List what area you want to do today. It might be the bookshelf, or the entertainment unit, the wardrobe, wherever. Pick one, do it properly, then move onto the next space. Even just doing 1 area properly each day will make a difference.
5.) Look for opportunities to de-clutter. By opportunities, I mean times when you are waiting, that you could be sorting. In the morning waiting for the kettle to boil or toast to cook, you could do a kitchen drawer. On the phone? Why not do the desk?
6.) Get help. If you are a hoarder who finds it extremely hard to part with anything, enlist the help of a ruthless friend. Get them to come over, go through your things with you and take away what you decide to get rid of, so it wont sit there and end up back in your house.
7.) Sell ASAP. If you have a box of things to sell, or a huge pile, sell it as soon as you can. Otherwise you have not de-cluttered, you have simple moved the clutter. Have a garage sale, list on one of the many online sites, the newspaper classifieds, wherever, just get rid of it. If it does not sell, donate it, don’t store it.
8.) Donate the donate box. Take it as soon as you have decided to donate. Get it out of your house. Make sure what you are donating is worth it though. Charities spend millions on getting rid of rubbish people donate.
9.) Set a deadline for when you want it all done. Such as I will have my house de-cluttered by the 10th of October. I will have sold everything by the 20th of October. And so on.
10.) Get to it. Stop delaying and making excuses, do it now!
My house is in the process of de-cluttering. And I will have it done by the 30th of September.