GRAND RAPIDS, Mich (WOTV) – Trust me, your remodeling projects will go much more smoothly if you take the time to declutter whatever areas will be affected. If nothing else, certainly fewer things to dust! If you’ve tried to declutter before without success, here are some easy tips that will lead to a successful decluttering process.
1. Take baby steps: Resolve to declutter one small area – a closet, a counter, even a single drawer – something that bugs you every day! This small success will remind you that you CAN do it!
2. Slow and Steady: Just as clutter accumulates over time, your fight against it must be gradual. You will need to build new habits and probably create new household routines. And certainly, have the appropriate storage containers for things you’re keeping. This clutter cure will take time; have patience.
3. Make declutter appointments for yourself and your family: A successful declutter session requires time, energy and motivation. Even 15 minutes a day is a good start – especially for smaller children – and maybe a reward to keep them motivated is in order too. Work towards longer blocks of time for maximum efficiency and motivation of success.
4. Forcing Decisions: The Four-Box Method: When I started my remodeling project in March 2015, my husband and I used this method to declutter. As we worked in each area of our condo, we had 4 boxes:
Keep: This one is obvious. We were sure to keep in a well-sealed, clear plastic container so we could access the contents if we needed to. For instance, we wrapped all our champagne flutes in bubble wrap and put them in a labeled container and we did indeed need to get them twice during our remodel.
Sell/Donate: We did this mostly for our clothes. If we hadn’t worn in it a year (didn’t like the color any more, didn’t fit, etc.) we would donate. With household items, we also had a GIVE TO KIDS box.
Store in a different area: Maybe a different drawer or closet makes more sense now that other things have been moved.
Throw it away: This included worn out clothing, cracked dishes, etc. I will say that it was great fun to retrieve our possessions as different projects were completed or we got some new furniture. AND there were things that we discovered we hadn’t missed during the 18month long project, so we ended up giving away even more stuff!