If you know anything about decluttering, it might be that it is not easy and it’s not for wafflers. There are many, many sources of information to guide you through, whether you go with Marie Kondo (I’ve read the books The Life Changing Magic and Spark Joy), Swedish Death (I’ve not read this one) or watch videos by the innumerable guru’s on YouTube (done this too). One method that’s recommended over and over is that you should tackle room by room or category by category. I’m throwing caution to the wind and going with my own method which is randomly picking an area and tossing anything that looks like it hasn’t been used in a while. Mercilessly.
So far I’ve made pretty decent headway on the junk room, the loft and the dining room. It certainly doesn’t get boring when you do it this way. An early lesson I’ve learned is it’s necessary to do different types of clearing in the same week so as not to overload the trash and recycling bins which are already full with four more days until it’s trash pick-up again.
My original idea was to toss 31 things every day for the month of October (961 total items for the month) but I found on the first day, that really wasn’t going to make a dent if I literally counted out 31 things. That day I chose to clean out a desk that accumulates random things and found hundreds of flash cards we’d made out of index cards to help our son study for a spelling bee. They all went into the recycling bin. Why do we make our kids do spelling bees, anyway?! It’s quite a stressful endeavor.
Instead of 31 things, I’m tossing items for about 30 minutes at a go, no rules really. Just decluttering until I feel of sense of satisfaction and headway. The benefits, even on day four, are immense! I feel energized by the space I’m making. It’s prompting me to take better care around the house on a daily basis. I’ve put away laundry that has nearly turned into part of the landscape. I’ve completed a huge pile of ironing. I’ve straightened out cupboards and drawers.
The first day of decluttering I probably got rid of nearly 1000 things (if you want to include all the flash cards) which was one giant bag of garbage and there was a temptation to say it would be OK to take a few days off because I was certainly ahead of schedule. Another voice told me it has to be done every day or I’ll lose the momentum so that’s the voice I’m listening to.
Reading or watching videos about decluttering can be inspirational. Eventually you have to start taking action and that’s when the real magic can begin.