Fall Cleaning: Conquering the Clutter

I know most people do “spring cleaning”, but when the snow is melting, and the tulips are sprouting, I just want to be outside. I figure, spring cleaning can wait until fall. So now that the days are getting shorter, and the cool air stings my lungs, I am in full-on fall cleaning mode.  The clutter in my house is threatening to cave in on me, and I just can’t take it anymore. With a one year old occupying the majority of my time, I don’t have a lot of time left to focus on de-cluttering, so I am taking a gradual (yet thorough) approach.

Here is my strategy for conquering the clutter:

Fill one garbage bag per week: I have set myself a goal of filling one garbage bag per week with things that I no longer want. I am not allowed to put any regular garbage in this bag- that’s cheating! Last week, I filled an entire bag just by going through my kitchen cupboards. This week, I filled a bag of old clothes to donate to Value Village.

Be ruthless: My husband and I both tend to have the mentality of “but what if we need it one day?”. While this is sometimes a good reason to keep something, 99% of the time, the day never comes when we actual “need” the whatever-it-is. When in doubt, throw it out!

Be smart: Despite the above plan to “be ruthless”, this needs to be done with some caution and consideration. What is the actual likelihood that I will need this item again? In the event that I throw it out, and I do end up needing it again, would it be expensive to buy it again?

Be a risk-taker: Throwing something out is always a risk- a risk that you will miss it, a risk that you will need it and not have it, and a risk that you will one day regret throwing it out. On the other hand, keeping it is a guarantee that the clutter is winning.

If you have any tips for conquering the clutter, I’d love to hear them. Happy Fall!

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