Last Updated on August 10, 2022
When it comes to decluttering, many of us feel overwhelmed before we even start. We might even ask ourselves why we should bother when our home seems just fine the way it is. Well, it’s not really fine, is it?
The truth is, when our homes are cluttered and full of unnecessary things, it affects every aspect of our lives. From our mental and emotional health to our productivity levels at work, a cluttered home can have a negative impact on what we do, think, and say.
It doesn’t matter if you’re 25 or 65, if your place of residence is chock full of stuff everywhere, it’s probably time to take a hard look at what can be done to get things under control.
But taking that first step can be really difficult, and for some, the motivation for decluttering isn’t quite there to spur you to action.
If that describes you, my friend, you’ve come to the right place. We’ll discuss why we get ourselves in this position to begin with, the effect is has on us (and those who live with us), then provide ten tips to help you ramp up the motivation, get your life back under control, and begin your decluttering journey.
Be sure to grab your free resource printable, 30-Day Declutter Challenge, which is found below under Motivation Tips #2!
Why Do We Accumulate So Much Stuff?
It’s no secret that we live in a material world. We’re constantly bombarded with ads for the latest must-have gadget or designer clothes. And when we do buy something new, it can be hard to get rid of the old stuff.
After all, we’re going to use it again, right? Besides, it might be worth something someday. The truth is, our homes are full of stuff that we don’t really need or want. But we can’t seem to let go of it. Why is that?
There are a few reasons why we tend to accumulate so many material things. For one thing, our homes are usually much larger than they need to be. We have more storage space than ever before, so we’re less likely to get rid of something just because we don’t have room for it.
Additionally, many of us believe that our possessions define us and make us who we are. As a result, getting rid of something can feel like giving up a part of ourselves.
Finally, most of us have been taught that it’s wasteful to throw away something that could still be used by someone else.
Of course, there’s nothing wrong with owning things. But when our possessions start to own us, it’s time to take a step back and consider what’s really important in life. Sometimes, less is definitely more.
When Does Extra Stuff Become Clutter That Impacts Our Daily Routine and Living?
It’s easy to fall into the trap of accumulating too many material possessions. We’re constantly bombarded with ads for the latest must-have gadgets and trends. And it’s not just material possessions — we also accumulate digital clutter in the form of emails, photos, and files.
This clutter can make it difficult to find things when we need them, and it can lead to feelings of anxiety and overwhelm.
Before you know it, your home is full of stuff and you’re struggling to find space for everything. Not only is this cluttered environment overwhelming, but it can also negatively impact your daily life.
For instance, you may find yourself wasting time looking for things that are hidden beneath piles of clutter. Or you may feel anxious and stressed out by the chaotic state of your home.
When you acknowledge these feelings and where they’re originating, it’s important to take action and declutter your space. By getting rid of unnecessary possessions, you can create a more peaceful and orderly environment that will support your well-being.
The Benefits of a Clean Decluttered Home
A clutter-free home offers many benefits. From a physical standpoint, you’ll have more space and be better organized. This can lead to improved productivity and efficiency in your everyday tasks.
Here are some ways that a clean and uncluttered house can help you be more productive:
- You’ll waste less time looking for things. How many times have you looked for your keys or your phone, only to find them in the last place you looked? A clean and organized house will help you cut down on the time you spend looking for things.
- You’ll have more time for important things. If you’re not spending hours cleaning, sorting through piles, and moving things around every week, you’ll have more time to focus on what is really important to you. You can spend more time with your family, working on your hobbies, or just relaxing.
- You’ll be less stressed. A cluttered and messy house can be stressful and overwhelming. But a clean and organized house can give you a sense of peace and calm. And when you’re not stressed out, you’re more likely to be productive.
But the benefits go beyond the physical. A decluttered home can also help improve your mental and emotional well-being. When your surroundings are cluttered, it can lead to feelings of anxiety and overwhelm, even hopelessness (I’ll never be able to get rid of this clutter!)
But when your home is clean and organized, you’ll feel calmer and more in control.
Do you agree that a clean and uncluttered home will result in a greater feeling of contentment? Well, it’s true! In a study done by UCLA, it was found that people with cluttered homes were more likely to have higher levels of the stress hormone cortisol.
They also found that people with clean and uncluttered homes had lower levels of cortisol. Not only that, but they also had lower levels of the stress hormone norepinephrine.
So not only will a clean and uncluttered home make you feel more content, it will also help to improve your health!
Motivation for Decluttering: 10 Tips
Okay, here is some decluttering motivation for you, my friend. If you’re going to make the commitment to spend time on this (possibly huge) project, you’ve recognized that you have too much stuff and you’re willing to do the work. So, here are ten decluttering tips that will get you moving forward!
1 | The why
Before you embark on decluttering your home, it’s important to understand why you want to do it.
What is your motivation to declutter? Is it because your home is feeling cluttered and chaotic? Or is it because you want to simplify your life and reduce your possessions?
There are no right or wrong answers – it’s all about what works for you. Once you’ve identified your reasons, it will be easier to stay motivated and focused on your goal.
One of the best things you can do when you start the decluttering project is to sit down and write out your motivations for doing so. These are your decluttering goals.
- Why do you want to declutter?
- What are your goals?
- What does a decluttered space look like and feel like to you?
Take the time to visualize and articulate what you’re hoping to achieve. Doing this will not only help to keep you motivated throughout the process, but it will also help you to make more specific, focused decisions about what to keep and what to let go. And, it will help prevent you from losing motivation.
If you find yourself struggling with a particular item, ask yourself how it fits into your overall vision for a decluttered space. If it doesn’t fit, let it go. It’s that simple. By understanding your ‘why,’ you can find more success and satisfaction in the decluttering process.
Bear in mind as you start decluttering, you may find that your reasons change or evolve. That’s perfectly normal, and it’s all part of the process.
So don’t be afraid to experiment and explore – the journey is just as important as the destination.
2 | The plan
Before you begin decluttering your home, having a plan is essential. Here’s why:
1. It will save you time. Trying to declutter without a plan is like trying to find your way in a dark room – you’ll end up going in circles and wasting a lot of time. But if you have a plan, you’ll know exactly what needs to be done and how to do it, so you can get the job done quickly and efficiently.
2. It will help you stay focused. It’s easy to get sidetracked when you’re decluttering, especially if you’re trying to do it without a plan. Having a plan will help you stay focused on the task at hand so that you can declutter your home quickly and effectively.
3. It will prevent things from getting overwhelming. Trying to declutter your entire home at once can be daunting and overwhelming. But if you have a plan, you can break down the task into smaller, more manageable pieces. This will make it much easier to tackle the project and avoid getting overwhelmed.
4. It will help you stay organized. One of the biggest benefits of decluttering is that it helps to keep your home organized. But if you don’t have a plan, it’s easy for things to get out of control again quickly. Having a plan will help you stay organized and keep your home looking great.
30-Day Declutter Challenge: Free Printable
Do you need some help with a simple decluttering plan? Here is a free 30-Day Declutter Challenge to give you some direction and increased motivation! Give it a try and see how it works for you.
3 | Talk it out
When it comes to decluttering your home, sharing your plan with others can be a helpful way to find success and satisfaction.
First of all, having someone to be accountable to can be a big motivator. If you know that your spouse or friend is going to ask how the decluttering is going, you’re more likely to stay on track.
Additionally, keeping family members informed about your decluttering plan can help them be more supportive as well as understand what role they may have played in the accumulation of the clutter. Ideally, they will help in the process, too.
And finally, verbalizing your commitment to decluttering can help solidify it in your mind and make it feel more real.
Do You Need to Take a Deeper Dive Into Decluttering?
Sometimes, reading an article and grabbing a free printable just aren’t enough to make lasting changes in your life, and your habits.
Learn more about my newest digital course, Let Go of Clutter. You’ll still get the printable, but oh-so-much more than that!
4 | Your routine
One way to make the decluttering process less daunting is to make it part of your regular routine. This means setting aside time each day or week to tackle a specific area of your home.
Not only will this help you keep your space tidy, but it will also give you a sense of accomplishment and help you stay organized in the long run.
If you’re not sure where to start, try setting aside 10 minutes each day to declutter one small area of your home. Even if it can only be a single drawer in the kitchen, those ten minutes spent will more than come back to you in the ease of finding what you need when you’re making dinner.
You’ll be surprised how quickly the process goes, and how much better you’ll feel with a tidier space.
5 | Reward yourself
Feeling good about your decluttering progress is a great way to stay motivated! Here are a few simple ideas for rewarding yourself along the way:
- Take a break to enjoy a cup of tea or coffee (or your beverage of choice) in your newly decluttered space.
- Spend 10-15 minutes reading, relaxing, or doing something you enjoy in your newly decluttered space.
- Buy yourself a small gift related to your decluttering project goal (e.g., a new book on minimalism if your goal is to reduce clutter in your home).
- Allow yourself extra time for activities you enjoy outside of decluttering project time (e.g., watching a movie, taking a walk, talking with a friend).
- Write down 3 things you’re proud of that you’ve accomplished so far in your decluttering project journey. Include why you’re proud of each accomplishment. Keep this list somewhere you can see it and refer back to it when you need motivation.
6 | Simple is okay
You’re not alone if you’re feeling overwhelmed by the thought of decluttering your home. It’s a big job, and it’s easy to get bogged down in the details.
The best-laid plan for decluttering won’t get off the ground if you end up staring at it like a deer in headlights. It’s okay to start with simple. Really simple.
In fact, tackling a small decluttering project is a great way to get started. Not only will it make your task feel more manageable, but it will also give you a sense of accomplishment.
So go ahead and do that one small, simple thing. Then go on to the next.
7 | Be consistent
One of the most important aspects of decluttering is consistency. This means that once you start a project, you need to see it through to the end. This can be difficult, especially if you’re trying to declutter a large space or deal with years’ worth of accumulated stuff.
But there are good reasons to be consistent. First, it’s much easier to keep your home tidy if you don’t have random piles of stuff lying around.
Second, decluttering can be overwhelming if you try to do too much at once. By being consistent and taking it one step at a time, you can make the process more manageable.
Finally, decluttering is most effective when it’s done regularly. So if you’re not consistent, you’ll likely find yourself back at square one in no time. Consistency is key when it comes to decluttering, so make sure to stick with it!
8 | Have fun
As you work on decluttering your home, it’s important to have a little bit of fun. After all, the goal is to improve your space and your quality of life, not to create another stressful task. Here are a few ways to make decluttering fun, or at least kind of enjoyable:
1. Put on some music that makes you happy.
2. Make it a game with yourself or your family. See who can declutter the most in an hour or who can find the strangest item in the house.
3. Take a break every now and then to enjoy the results of your hard work. Stand back and appreciate the empty space or take a photo to remember how good it feels when everything is in its place.
Remember, the goal is to make your life better, so don’t be afraid to have a little fun while you’re at it!
9 | Appreciate the progress
As you tackle your decluttering project, it’s important to step back periodically and appreciate the progress you’ve made. It can be easy to get caught up in the details and forget how far you’ve come.
But taking a few moments to celebrate your accomplishments will help keep you motivated and on track. Here are a few ways to do that:
– Hang a “before” and “after” photo in your work area or room at home to remind yourself of how far you’ve come.
– Make a list of all the items you’ve decluttered. It’ll be satisfying to see how much you’ve accomplished.
– Give yourself a pat on the back! A little self-care goes a long way when you’re feeling overwhelmed.
So take a break, appreciate your hard work, and then get back to decluttering! You’ll be glad you did.
10 | Patience
It can be easy to get overwhelmed when you’re decluttering your home. You might look around and feel like you’ll never be able to get everything in order, that all your stuff will be hanging around forever. Sigh.
But it’s important to have patience with yourself as you work through the process. Decluttering is a journey, not a race. And even though it might take some time, the end result will be worth it.
So take a deep breath, relax, don’t lose motivation, and enjoy the journey of decluttering your home. Before you know it, you’ll be finished and feeling lighter and freer than ever before.
Decluttering your home can be a daunting task, but it’s important to remember that it’s a journey, not a race.
Plan well, take things one step at a time, be patient with yourself, and enjoy the process. You’ll be glad you did when you finally finish!
p.s. Don’t forget to grab your free printable, 30-Day Declutter Challenge!
Afton Jackson says
It really made a lot of sense when you talked about how you will experience less stress when decluttering. After seeing just how many random items we have here, I end up just thinking about how annoying it would be to constantly clean up everything. To make that easier, I’ll look for a self-storage unit where we can store all of the items we plan to get rid of after decluttering.
Sounds like a good plan, thanks for stopping by. 🙂