1. Add one, discard two. Every time you buy something new for the house, get rid of at least two old things.Â It might be a good idea to ensure what you give away is from the same genre. For example, if you get a new salad bowl,Â give away two crockery items; not two pairs of shoes.
2. Recycle: ‘There are things that you get as presents and some that you just buy for no particular reason. You soon realise that you don’t need them and then keep thinking of ways to get rid of them. The best way is to pass them on to others who might need them more than you do.
3. Start with one small area and as its easier to clean one by-one than getting lost in a bigger area. This might take a longer time, but it helps a lot in systematic decluttering.
4. If it’s unused for a year, say goodbye! Fix your own timeline – it could be two years or two months – and use it to resolve all your clutter-related issues at home. Yes, that includes the 60th dinner plate and the 40th wine glass! If you haven’t had a big enough party to use them in a year or two, you never will.
5. Open the drawer you haven’t touched for years and start emptying it. Once you start sorting, you may want to keep some old letters or receipts, but the truth is you haven’t looked at them in years. They are obviously not as important as you think.
6. Put things back where they belong. After you finish using something, put it back in its place as soon as possible.
7. Have plenty of storage space. You can never have enough space, but the following are necessary: There should be sufficient wardrobe space (depending on how much you shop), a shoe rack, storage for handbags, book shelves, closed racks in the kitchen, drawers below the bed (if possible), a bookshelf in the bathroom (if you read there), closed storage space in the washrooms, and attic storage for luggage.
8. Divide, delegate & donate. Clearing up clutter is not just one person’s responsibility. Do delegate work to all members of the family, including children.
9. Does it work? There are different levels to this question. For instance, does your two-year-old appliance still work? If it’s broken, have you fixed it in the past six months? If you haven’t, it certainly means that you either don’t intend to get it fixed, or you have simply lost interest. So sell it right away.
10. Give away objects of sentimental attachment: Objects with sentimental attachment come in all shapes and forms – the T-shirt scrawled with rude things from your last day in school, letters and photographs from your parents, memorabilia from a holiday, gifts, journals and diaries you’ve been keeping. Digitize them and remove the clutter.