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my house is too cluttered and I don't know where to start
04Nov

Help! My House is Cluttered & I Don’t Know Where to Start!

Written by in Cleaning Tips
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When your house is a mess, you’re a mess.  And when you’re a mess, your house is a mess.   So if you’re feeling more easily triggered than usual because your house is cluttered & you don’t know where to start, I’ve got some incredibly simple tips to help you get rid of your stubborn clutter. And as the clutter finally leaves, you’ll see your house coming together, you’ll also begin to feel more chill. And have fewer biting-innocent-people’s-heads-off-incidents. Yes, we know you wanted ketchup on the side so they put in a bowl. He had no way of knowing you specifically wanted ketchup packets ok ma’am?

All jokes aside, it’s totally normal for too much stuff to make you spazz out lol.  We – us humans – weren’t built for clutter.  So don’t beat yourself up about it.  After all, if you’re reading this, you probably live in a culture where *more* is the rule of the land.  More shoes.  Toys.  Storage bins.  And fries.   Of course, you have too much stuff!

So when it comes to getting rid of all that crap, people usually fall into two categories:  either they can get rid of it without batting an eye or they Struggle.  With a capital S.   

And since you’re reading this, I’m going to bet you’re in the group with the capital S as the logo.  Welcome.  You’re in the right place.  Today, I’m going to show you a simple 3-step process to help you ease into becoming a Spectacular Declutterer.  No more struggle decluttering for you my friend. 

 Ready.  Set. Let’s Go! 

Discover where to start decluttering your messy home in 3-steps:

First things first, don’t think of this as a bunch of random tips.  These 3-little-steps don’t look like much but together, they’re a bonafide plan.  And guess what? These steps double as a routine! Say what!? You may not know it but that’s exactly what you need right now.   And here’s why. A routine you can do over and over again is going to help you break out of the mind set of thinking about what to do and instead move you to a place where you just take action. Like the brawly guy that just wants to smash. But on a sidenote, you’ll do things a little smarter than that guy. I can’t see you, but I know you’re a pretty good mix of muscles & brains. Hot stuff you are!

Before we dive into this, my only rule for you is don’t pick and choose what parts of this to use.  Again, it’s just 3-little-steps so follow them as-is.  No remixing. And you will walk your way into the decluttering hall of fame!

3-Steps To Figure Out Where To Declutter /

  1. Get up!
  2. M.A.P.
  3. The start line

Step 1: Teeny-Tiny Goals

Option 1: Dive even deeper into that Netflix series or Option 2: Get up, and empty out the junk drawer.  Your answer probably depends on the day lol.  But don’t worry, this is a judge free zone.  

I’ll go ahead and say it, procrastination is real.  It’s heavy.  And it’s stubborn.   It keeps you from doing what you know you need to be doing.  The little things you need to do to make big things happen. 

So what’s the quickest way to shake procrastination? Think small.  That’s right.  Set the world’s smallest goals for yourself.  Literally.  

Instead of thinking about the whole house needing to be decluttered – which is an absurdly ginormous task by the way – think of something super doable.  Like tossing out the next pair of socks you put on that have a hole in them.  That is decluttering.  

That baking pan so chipped it’s an undeniable health hazard can be put in the trash can as well.  That’s decluttering my friend.  Think small.  Go for realistic.  And above all, go for consistency.  One tiny thing everyday, and you’ll get out of your rut before you know it.  

Step 2: M.A.P.

Once you’ve gotten into the groove of decluttering, it’s time to level up.  Hello M.A.P.  Stands for make a plan. 

Step two is simple enough.  And the key to seeing real results around the house.  

But easier said than done right?  I mean, the whole reason you’re here is because you don’t know where to start.  So here is a template you can follow to make the perfect decluttering plan for you.  

First, make a goal for the year.  This year I want to have the house decluttered.  Boom.  (write) it down.  

This year  = declutter the entire house so it looks cleaner

Second, assign a decluttering goal/space for each month.  The next 12-months to be exact.  

January = the kitchen

February = my bedroom

March = the kids’ bedroom

Third, create weekly goals for the next month.  Or three.  It should look something like this: 

January = the kitchen

Week 1 = upper cabinets

Week 2 = lower cabinets

Week 3 = pantry

Week 4 = the fridge.  

And the fourth step is to break things down even further into daily goals.  But this step is funny.  Not everyone needs to do this step.  You see, it really depends on your personality and schedule.  

For some people, weekly goals/projects are just fine.   As a matter of fact, daily goals are a recipe for a FEMA-sized disaster.  I fall into this group.  

And for others, daily goals are life.  Everything planned out.  Like down to the millisecond.  These people claim to be human.  But I believe they are aliens.  

The good news is planning isn’t one-sized fit all.  Yes, clutter is bad.  But don’t take any of this too serious.  I hear people say to give yourself grace.  To me, that means treat yourself the way you’d treat the 5-year old you.  Experiment.   Play around.  Figure out what works for you.  What doesn’t.  And treat yourself along the way for seeing this decluttering thing through.

Speaking of treats, this is the order I think you should declutter your home in.  Don’t like that order, tweak it to your liking:  

  • The kitchen
  • The bathrooms
  • Common areas
  • Bedrooms
  • Storage areas

Step 3:  Flash (Trash) Mob

Where should I start decluttering my messy house – or room?!   Thankfully, like a flash mob, there is no wrong place to start.  Those guys just show up out of nowhere, do their thing, vanish into thin air, and leave the rest of us half-smiling & heads spinning. You honestly don’t know what just happened but you feel good.  Lol  

Tackle decluttering with the same speed, intention,1 and dazzling energy of a flash mob.  This will help you get clearer spaces much quicker.  If you’ve made your plan – step 2 ahem – you kind of already know where to start in your home.  

But this is how you quickly get things rolling in each space.  And you can even flash mop your entire house first, then start your decluttering plan from step 2.  I highly recommend you do this because it’ll make the real decluttering even breezier.

🗑 Start with the obvious trash sitting on surfaces.  Aim to fill a bag – or 5.  

Grab your electric blue tights, a trash bag & start at the entrance of the room.  Work that thing from left to right.  Don’t spend time thinking about anything during this phase of your decluttering.  It’s either trash or it isn’t.  Be ruthless.  Be quick.  Fill up the trash bags.

Set a timer for 20-minutes  

Distracted much? Having to beat the clock will give you the adrenaline & focus you need to get the job done.  Orrrrr if you’re the type that tends to get lost in an activity, the timer will help you stop so you can move on to whatever else you need to do.  Like, pick up your kids?  

Surfaces vs Hidden Spaces 

Decluttering surfaces first will give you an instant feeling of progress.  Not to mention, if you clear the surfaces in a room, you’ll have enough space to quickly declutter all those hidden spaces packed full of the wonders of the universe. 

Honestly, depending on the amount of clutter you have, your decluttering plan could focus on just surface clutter.  Then let hidden clutter be the focus during the next decluttering round.  

Bonus Tip:  Follow the 20/10 Rule 

Ever tried the Pomodoro technique?  It helps you to get more done in less time studying or working, and is just as effective for things like cleaning your home.  All you need is a timer.  

Here’s how it works:  for every 20 minutes of cleaning, you should rest for 10 minutes. Do this 2 times, and you’ve had a very productive hour of housework.  Sounds too simple to work?  Just try it out then let me know what you think.  

Other articles that’ll help you declutter painlessly: 

  1. Why is is soo hard to declutter my house. And how to make it unhard.

2. How to clean a very dirty bedroom. Fast!

3. How-to declutter your house. Without making a mess.

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