Living More with Less: Decluttering

Collect moments not things.

Decluttering brings with it a sense of clarity and satisfaction, creating space and providing an overall feeling of calm.

I try to declutter my home as I go, cleaning out my closet from season to season and donating items I come across that I haven’t used in who knows how long. I love that fresh feeling and would rather the items I don’t use go to someone who would use them. At the moment I’m in the midst of The Ultimate Spring Clean. Our upcoming move (only a week to go!) will be a lesson in less space and less things. Its a chance to look at every single thing we own and choose if we really need/love it. Not as much of a challenge as Vanlifers face as they fit all of their belongings into a van instead of renting, but still a challenge nonetheless. I’m looking forward to making our little city unit a home and to the calm simplicity brings.

If you’re thinking about simplifying your home too, here are a few tips I decluttering I’ve learnt along the way..

10 Decluttering Tips
– Transfer all hard copy files (bills, group certificates, pay slips etc.) into electronic copies. Some banks have incentives for going paperless and it will be so much easier come tax time.
– Ditch the DVDs and BluRays and save your movies and TV shows to an external hard drive. I just freed up 4 large drawers this week by doing this.
– Store photos and videos on an external hard drive and say goodbye to stacks and stacks of photo albums.
– Take a leaf out of Marie Kondo’s life changing book by keeping only those things that “spark joy”.
– Another great tip by Marie Kondo is to store clothes vertically. It saves space and you can see everything!
– Make sure those you share your home with are on the same page. Kevin and I are somewhat opposite when it comes to keeping vs. clearing but we’re able to make it work by listing the for and against for keeping/clearing something and coming to an agreement.
– Consider a capsule wardrobe (not everyone is a fan of this..ahem Kevin..but if it works for you then go for it).
– My Year 9 Food Tech teacher taught me the phrase “Mise en place” or “everything in it’s place”. its something that stuck with me and to this day I like to have a home for everything. The shoes live in the shoe cupboard and the coffee lives inside the pantry. If I can’t find a home for something, do I really need it? Kevin love/hates me for this because I’m forever putting things back where they live, even accidentally putting his shoes back in the shoe cupboard once he’s got them out for the day. Can’t say I’m not efficient!
– Do you really need ALL of those books? This is a hard one for me but it’s amazing how much space is freed once you let go of all of those books you’ll never read again or keep with lending them to friends in mind.
– Repurposing is just as important as decluttering. Donating to charity, giving to friends and family or coworkers even, or finding a new function for an unused item is a zillion times better than sending it to landfill.

Finally, I’ve found it best to make decluttering a habit. Once anything becomes part of your lifestyle, the clutter won’t build up as quickly and keeping the home clear becomes second nature.

Let go and grow.

When was the last time you decluttered? do you have any tips for clearing clutter or downsizing? Anything you find particularly hard to let go of?

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16 Comments

  1. Personally, I feel a lot better in a minimalistic space. I bought a nice storage unit for my hubby, so that he can put all his bits and bobs in there (out of sight)!

  2. I love living as clutter free as I can. My DVDs were all donated about a year ago. Now I am thinking about doing the same with my CDs. However this is easier said than done. 🙂 I only read e-books now and love the portability of the e-reader so much better than a physical book. My husband is the opposite, not wanting to part with anything. So there is a little challenge there! He has his rationale for keeping things so I have to hear him out to understand.

  3. Since discovering KonMari and doing the steps from both her books, I am a true convert and so far, has kept up with the decluttering. These are great tips you outlined for sure:)

  4. A great read. I am constantly decluttering..I am a large bag in the basement where donations go.. once it’s full I pick a charity and donate.
    I have another box where I put all the things that I can sell and off to ebay it goes.

  5. Just that little corner of your bedroom is peaceful and beautiful. Agree with all of your tips! The one that’s SO hard for me to stick to is putting things back when done, it’s SO hard for me and gets me back to being cluttered even though I’m basically an extreme minimalist (other than my store and its merchandise) now. I nerdily excited to do another round of the KonMari method and hopefully get in the habit of staying 100% clutter free this time!

    1. Thanks V! 🙂 I liked her books and think her method is a great start. I think the biggest thing about keeping things organised is habit. When it becomes a part of your every day it’s not hard to stick to because it just becomes a way of life. Although with house sharing, guests and life’s inevitable surprises it can easily be thrown off course!

  6. I’ve read the book too, but I just can not get rid of photo albums and pretty postcards. They spark lots of joy, so I guess I am allowed to hang on to them. I too love the folding of clothes, it is really satisfying to open up a drawer and seeing everything neatly standing up 🙂 I even enjoy the folding part itself!

    1. I do too! It’s strangely therapeutic, right? Hehe
      Ahh..certain books and crystals are my versions of your photo albums and pretty postcards 🙂 as long as you love them I think they can stay x

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