Clutter: it can take over home and truly your life. You save things because of sentiment, hopeful practicality and just because you paid money for it and don’t want to get rid of it. None of these reasons are good ones to keep things that you don’t use, love or truly need. If you are selling your Jacksonville home, this is even more incentive for you to give up the clutter, so your potential buyers can see a home that is spacious, cozy and where they won’t focus on the stuff. Here are 10 principles that will help you clear the clutter.
1. Decide what’s important in your life
You may need to do a little soul searching or it may take you 30 seconds to decide, but by figuring out what’s truly important in your life, it will make it easier for you to decide what to get rid of and what to keep. Thought you’d love cooking, but realized it wasn’t up your alley? Sell those chef’s tools to someone who will love it. Haven’t touched your scrapbooks in five years? Donate your scrap supplies to your local school.
2. Don’t bring in more
One of the most important principles of reducing clutter is to stop bringing in more. While retail therapy is a true thing, it brings in limited value and happiness and in fact, can bring on depression and other woes. Stop shopping for things you don’t need or believe you may need.
3. Figure out how much you need
Many people buy duplicates of things when they truly don’t need to. How many soup ladles do you truly need and how often do you really eat soup? Figure out how many of each item you need and get rid of the ones you love the least.
4. Do the easy stuff first
Reducing clutter can be a big job, especially if you have sold your home and are moving. Start with something easy, that won’t be difficult with you to part with, like the items in your garage or shed.
5. Do one area at a time
Similarly, don’t feel the need to tackle the entire house in one day. Choose an area and focus on that until the job is done. Make a plan for the other areas on different days.
6. Don’t feel guilty
Guilt is a strong human emotion, but it shouldn’t be placed on you because of material things. You may be keeping things out of pure guilt – for example, a dead family member’s belongings – but it is just cluttering up your home because you neither love the items or need them. Don’t feel guilty getting rid of things.
7. Recognize how it feels
As you do get rid of things, recognize how it can feel. Whether you are donating, selling or trashing the items, it can be very freeing to remove clutter from your home. It means less cleaning, organizing and less time finding what you do need.
8. Get a plan in place for the future
While you may have succeeded in reducing the clutter in your home, you want to make sure it doesn’t build up again. Get a solid plan in place for how you will deal with new items coming in to your home and getting rid of ones that you don’t need.
9. If something comes in, something goes out
This great adage ensures you don’t over clutter once again. It could be part of the plan for the future or just something you truly live by.
10. Be consistent and don’t expect perfection
Reducing clutter is an ongoing process and you will go off the rails once in a while. Don’t expect to be the perfect person who keeps an immaculate home and always sticks to the rules. As long as your home feels open, comfortable and a nice place to live, you’re doing your job!