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How to Minimize Your House Quickly and Easily: Clearing Clutter Fast

Stuff. It’s everywhere. It seems like almost anybody you talk to will tell you that they’re sick of stuff! Sometimes the very things that we think we want, are the things that also make us the most frustrated. If you’re overwhelmed with stuff, then you need to get rid of it! Clearing clutter fast is not easy.

That’s why these questions will really help you decide what to keep and what to get rid of. And it won’t take long! You’ll be surprised at how quickly you can declutter once you know the right questions to ask!

(If you haven’t gotten the hang of being a minimalist, that is! – Although, I’m assuming that if you’re reading this article, you probably need a little help with minimizing. And that’s totally OK! That’s what I’m here for! 😉 )

Every year around spring I start feeling really antsy and I can’t wait to clean out the garage, the basement, the toy room, etc.

In fact, one time my husband was worried that if he stood still too long, I might put him in the thrift store pile! 🙂 When I get on a roll and decide to minimize, I want a way to evaluate my things quickly and easily. I’m a sentimental person so getting rid of stuff isn’t always easy for me.

Minimizing Material Possessions Will Help You Regain Time

That’s why having these easy ways to evaluate and minimize my things has really helped. I decided long ago that I didn’t want to be a slave to my things. I don’t want the things to overtake my house so much that I can’t enjoy my family or the things that I love. And I don’t want to be busy organizing my house constantly.

Therefore, the only option is to minimize and declutter. When your stuff gets out of control and you become overrun with things, it’s time to get rid of stuff!

It’s time to regain control and let your stuff work for you  – not you for it!

These tips will help you declutter house in 30 days

It’s funny, but when you declutter your things and you aren’t constantly trying to manage them, you really do end up getting time back.

Manage your things instead of letting them manage you!

Decluttering your house can sound intimidating. In fact, if you have years of things you need to get rid of, you might be dreading going through them. Don’t worry. I have a plan to help you get started.

Do You Have Difficulty Throwing Things Away?

For some reason, getting rid of things can be very hard. I totally get it! Maybe it’s the sentimentality or possibly the security that having certain things brings. Whatever the case, I get that decluttering your home is not an easy thing.

If you’re one that has trouble getting rid of things, you’re not alone. I, for one, can attach a sentimental value to just about anything, making it hard to get rid of stuff. So I really understand if it’s hard for you to declutter.

So, if that’s you, and you struggle with throwing things away, there are a few things that can help. For one, using the Decluttering Binder will make it super easy to systematically declutter your house.

And two, if you don’t like to throw things away, but you know you need to declutter, then consider donating your things or finding someone who could really use them. For some people, that alone helps ease the pain of not wanting to get rid of your stuff. Especially if the person you’re giving your things to really needs/wants them and will put whatever it is to good use.

How Do You Minimize Clutter?

There really are so many different approaches to minimizing and that’s totally fine. The main thing is that you get rid of the clutter. Not so much the method you use.

I’m sharing the tips that I use that have worked so well for me, and although I’m not a hoarder, I definitely have to think about what I’m getting rid of. It’s not easy just to clear out my things and never look back. So I understand the feeling of overwhelm.

Starting by asking the questions below is a great way to start decluttering.

Here's how to get motivated to clean when you're overwhelmed by the mess.

How Do You Know When to Get Rid of Things?

Again, this is a personal question, but the guideline I use really is to evaluate when the last time was that you used it and go from there. I used to keep things for a looooong time, thinking I would eventually use them.

But then as time went on, my things I might use someday storage area started to get overrun with stuff. I knew it was time to declutter. And you’ll know when the time is right for you, too.

One of the main ways I could tell it was time was because I was starting to feel like my things were running me instead of the other way around. And that’s a bad feeling.

It was difficult to find things in our basement (my main storage area) and I couldn’t keep the house straight. That’s when I knew it was time to start getting serious about minimizing my things.

I’m so glad I did!

If Clearing Clutter Fast is Your Goal, then These Questions Will Help You Know How To Decide What To Keep When Decluttering

Ready? Here’s your handy-dandy checklist that’s sure to get you started pitching things right away! You better get your hands on a pick-up tuck and a trailer cuz you’re gonna need it!!

(Note: In the following questions, the “it”, I refer to below can be interchanged with any item you’re trying to decide whether or not to keep. Now carry on! I don’t want to stop you from minimizing!) 

Use these clearing clutter fast tips to help you organize your house once and for all. Picture of a very clean and organized house.

1. Do You Really Need It?

Need is a strong word and probably somewhat relative. My definition of need and yours could be totally different. But for the sake of this article, ask yourself for a second if your life would be difficult without the item in question.

Do you really need it?

Those shoes that have been sitting under your bed untouched for years, those are the ones I’m talking about. Do you need them? If you got rid of them today would you even notice?

Sure, they match the outfit you wore for your first job interview, and they really aren’t hurting you by hanging out under your bed, but they’re also not helping you to minimize your house.

2. Do You Really Love It? 

I have a unique capability of attaching sentimental value to just about anything. If someone gave something to me, no matter what it is, suddenly it becomes important to me. Yes, I am a tender-heart, but let’s face it, I really don’t need to save a gum wrapper from my first date with my husband. 

So when I ask myself the question, “Do I really love it?” I have to think hard. And so do you! Be honest!

  • What is the item in question?
  • How much do you love it?
  • Was it a gift?
  • Did you just happen to find it at a garage sale?
  • Would you buy it today?

Make yourself think about the hard questions and ask yourself if you really do love it. If it doesn’t pass the test, get rid of it! You’ll feel so much better minimizing. And if it does, enjoy it, knowing that you really thought about it and you want to keep it. That’s totally OK!

(By minimizing, you’re allowing yourself to keep the things you really love and not being overrun by the things that are just, meh!)

3. Does it Still Fit You?

This is touchy, I know! We all have those things in our closets that just don’t fit anymore. (Why, oh why do we keep them, anyway?) You know what I’m talking about, right? The jeans you fit into in high school that you swore to yourself you would someday wear again. But let’s face it, even if you could wear them again, they probably aren’t even in style anymore!

Clearing clutter fast can be difficult, but these questions will help make it quicker and easier

So, plan an afternoon where you can try on all the things in your closet that you don’t want to get rid of and then be honest. Get rid of anything that doesn’t fit you.

4. Do You Still Use It? 

This seems like an obvious question, but surprisingly, it’s not! My house is full of things that I don’t use anymore. In fact, I haven’t touched some of the things in the storage area of my basement for a long time. (Terrible, I know!)

Therefore, I’m not still using many of the things and even though I have the best intentions to someday use my 20 quart stock pot, it may just be time for it to go.

Do you have things in your storage that you haven’t touched in years? Take a careful assessment. Are you storing things because you think that someday you will use it? If you aren’t using the item in question and haven’t used it for a long time, then it might be time for you to let it go.

5. Does It Make Your Life Easier?

If there’s something that I own that makes my life easier than there’s no way I’m going to get rid of it. The real estate it takes up on my storage shelf is worth it if I can benefit from the convenience it brings.

But clutter is also debilitating (and not at all convenient.) Therefore it’s important to weigh each item (in your mind, not on a scale! :P) that you’re storing and really evaluate whether or not it makes your life easier.

If it does, by all means, keep it! And if it doesn’t….you know the drill!

6. How Long Has It Been Since You’ve Last Used It? 

I’m ashamed to say how long I’ve had something sitting in storage. And honestly, I don’t usually think that it’s been that long since I’ve really used it. (Because time really does fly!) If I sit and think, actually some things in my storage area of my basement haven’t been touched in years. (Now I know where I’m gonna start decluttering!)

Do you have things like that too?

As you go through each of your belongings, ask yourself how long it’s been since you’ve last used it. If you’ve gone through an entire year without using it, then get rid of it.

A year is plenty of time to know. You will have gone through all of the seasons and holidays and if that old kitchen gadget is still sitting in the back of your kitchen cabinet, then the chances are very good that you won’t ever use it.

Get rid of it!

7. Could You Replace It If You Ever Needed It Again?

And then there are those things that you really hesitate to get rid of in case you ever need them again. But since you can’t possibly imagine every scenario, sometimes you just have to take the chance and get rid of something.

Whenever I get rid of something I’m on the fence about, I think to myself whether or not I could replace it if I ever did need it again. If the answer is no, I’m a little more hesitant to get rid of the item in question. Of course, if I can ever replace it if I needed to, and I haven’t used it in a long time, then it’s on its way out the door.

Decide whether or not you could ever replace the item in question if you needed to. (It’s very likely you wouldn’t need to use it if you haven’t already, but you know, just in case!)

8. Is It Something You Want to Take With You Into the Future?

Now this question causes me to pause, and it should do the same for you! Because it’s a really good question. When you’re storing things that you don’t want to get rid of, the number one reason why is because you think you might need it in the future, right? I mean most of the time that’s the case, barring those things that hold sentimental value.

But think about it for a minute. Do you really want to carry something with you into the future? That old t-shirt you can’t let go of because it holds memories? The extra jeans your saving, “just in case.”

When you ask yourself whether or not you want to bring this thing with you into the future, it puts a different spin on it. If something served you well or hold good memories, great. That’s so awesome. But if you don’t want to take it with you into the future, get rid of it and move on!

9. What Are Your Decluttering Goals?

Everyone has different goals and decluttering your home is no exception. It’s good to think about why you want to declutter your things. Because that goal will help you stay focused when you’re sick of it! And believe me, you’ll get sick of it. I can tell you firsthand!

For me, it was about not being managed by my things, allowing me to have more time to spend with my kids and less time straightening and organizing. I didn’t want to spend each day trying to make calm out of chaos. The only solution was to get rid of stuff!

Ask yourself what you really want. Evaluate what your decluttering goals really are.

  • Do you want to make some extra money selling the things you don’t need anymore?
  • Are you tired of a chaotic mess in your house?
  • Do you need more space in your home?
  • Are you just sick of all the stuff you have?
  • Is the clutter making you stressed? Depressed? Anxious?
  • Are you embarrassed by your mess?

In the Decluttering Binder, I help you go through your decluttering goals so you have a solid reason for minimizing your home and getting rid of things.

To Recap: Here’s the Minimalist Decluttering Checklist for Clearing Clutter Fast

  1. Do You Really Need It?
  2. Do You Really Love It? 
  3. Does it Still Fit You?
  4. Do You Still Use It? 
  5. Does It Make Your Life Easier?
  6. How Long Has It Been Since You’ve Last Used It? 
  7. Could You Replace It If You Ever Needed It Again?
  8. Is It Something You Want to Take With You Into the Future
  9. What Are Your Decluttering Goals?

If You Decide to Get Rid of Something, Then What? 

What exactly should you do with all the things you’re getting rid of?

The beauty of decluttering is that you have options. You can start an online selling business by selling your things on eBay, or Facebook (although, if you want to be done with the clutter quickly, I don’t recommend it. It might be better to just get rid of it once and for all.)

You also could donate your items to your local thrift store or homeless shelter, recycle your things, or, if you’re handy, you could up-cycle the item and make it something more useful. Just be careful and choose wisely what you will keep. Because the idea is to minimize.

If you’re having trouble getting rid of an item because of emotional attachment, take a picture! Then file it into a folder called memories, and you can come back to look at it whenever you want. (I’ll bet you won’t as often as you think you would, though!)

Another option is to trade your unwanted items. Maybe a friend has something more useful for you.

Whatever the case, if you use these easy ways to minimize your house, you will be organized in no time. Your house will be much more refreshing to live in and you won’t be overwhelmed by the clutter.

For More Advanced Decluttering, Check Out the Decluttering Binder

I’ve thought long and hard about what is really essential to declutter your home. I laid out a systematic plan to help you know exactly what to declutter and where to start. (Because I know how hard it can be!)

There are checklists for every room, as well as worksheets to help you decide your plan and goals.

You can check out the Decluttering Binder here. I definitely recommend you click on that link. Your life might not ever be the same again!

Here's how to get motivated to clean when you're overwhelmed by the mess.

Clear the Clutter and Simplify Your Life

Once you clear the clutter, you’ll be absolutely amazed at how it affects your entire life. I know I was! When our home went from chaos to calm, everything changed. There was an overall feeling of happiness and the constant stress was gone.

I started getting up earlier and accomplishing things before my kids were out of bed. (It’s weird how a cluttered home doesn’t make you want to get up in the morning!)

The kids seemed more settled – probably because I was!

Even our finances were affected for the better.

I’m telling you, the decision to get rid of things from our home made our whole life so much more simplified. I want you to feel the same way!!

Related Articles About Decluttering the Home:

Here's how to get motivated to clean when you're overwhelmed by the mess.

What tips and ideas do you have for minimizing your home quickly and easily? Share your best suggestions below. And don’t forget to share this post on social media! Thank you!

 

Woman thinking about clearing clutter fast, sitting in a full closet

Clearing Clutter Fast {Questions To Ask When Purging}

 

 

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