There is no question that decluttering your home is challenging.  Once you decide to take on the challenge and declutter, there are still a few steps you should take before you start purging your closets.

So, grab your favorite beverage and get comfortable as we talk about what you need to do to prepare, so that once you declutter your home, it will stay that way.


“Decluttering is infinitely easier when you think of it

as deciding what to keep,

rather than deciding what to throw away. “

– Francine Jay –

image of two piles of clothes, one has a note saying Keep and the other has a note saying "Donate" for pinterest pin about how to ensure decluttering success

1. Change your Mindset

Decluttering your home is going to be difficult. You will find that you’re emotionally attached to some of the things that need to be moved out of your house. Accept now that this is going to be hard but commit to doing it anyway. 

Focusing on what you want to accomplish and why you need to declutter will make the process easier.

2. Decide to Stop Shopping

Right now, stop buying anything new. Yes, you may have to buy things to replace broken items, that’s okay, but always give it a lot of thought about whether you really need the item or not.

For now though, only buy things you truly must have until you get the clutter under control.

3. Remember your “Sunk” Costs

As you’re going through your stuff and moving out clutter, you may think that you’re wasting your money. In business, there’s this term: Sunk Cost. It essentially means that you’ve already spent the money, it’s gone. 

So, if you haven’t used those craft supplies for three years, are you really wasting money selling your stuff for 20 cents on the dollar? Or giving them away to someone who will actually use them? Nope. 

Not only that, but think of how much valuable real estate in your house, that the “thing” is actually costing you now.

4. Visualize your Space

Pick one room you want to start decluttering.  Now, go in there and stand in the middle. Make a slow 360 degree turn and look at your room. Note everything that’s in the way and disorganized, but then start – in your mind – removing things from the room until you can visualize what it will look like when it’s decluttered and organized.

Keep that picture in your mind when you start decluttering.

5. Gather your Decluttering Tools 

Here is permission to buy a couple of things, if you don’t have them already.   Gather together a couple of cardboard boxes for donations, a couple of large trash bags, and a storage bin or large clear bag for the stuff you will keep.

Don’t buy any organizing tools, bins or baskets until you know exactly where they will go and what you will use them for.

Once you’re ready to put the stuff you’re keeping away, you can buy proper storage containers.

6. Start with a Drawer

I always get my clients to start with a bathroom drawer because you usually don’t find things that you’re that emotionally attached to in there. 

Toss anything you haven’t used in the past 6 months – expired makeup, lotions that you don’t use, old hair bands…you get the idea.  Empty the drawer completely and give it a good wipe down.  Now measure the drawer and make a note of the dimensions. 

If you don’t have them already, buy some inexpensive drawer organizers that fit your drawer, and neatly put things away. 

This one small “win” will keep you motivated as you declutter the rest of the house. 

Decluttering your home is emotionally challenging.  But being prepared mentally and physically is the best way to ensure you have decluttering success.  Once you start to remove the emotional baggage of your clutter, you won’t need willpower or self-control to have a neat and organized home. 

PRO TIP:  If you find something that you’re just not ready to part with because you have an emotional attachment to it, put it in a separate bin and store it away.  You can go through it when you decide you’re ready. 

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