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Minimalist Declutter with Checklist

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Getting the home organized and learning to live with less takes a bit of mindset shifts. And I have some tips to help with a minimalist declutter for the home.

Plus, a free checklist to help you get started.

Living with a minimalist lifestyle can be challenging in the world that is consumed with so much consumerism and way too much stuff. But, it doesn’t have to be complicated to get started.

kitchen view with window in background and island in foreground

Getting started with a minimalist declutter

A few times a year, I like to go through a declutter session in my home. And I thought I would share a few tips that help me when I’m going through a declutter session.

First off, I believe that the process of decluttering is whatever we make it. It can be as big or as little as you wish to undertake.

I’m not here to say that there is one “best way” or what works for me will work for everyone who reads this blog. I’m just saying that these are the things that have helped me.

However, keep in mind, change won’t happen until you embrace it.

And sometimes when we are trying to think with a minimalism approach to living with less, we need to really commit to the efforts involved.

Let’s face it, learning to live with less is empowering! It creates less stress, less clutter. And less time on cleaning! 🙌

Decluttering Can Be Emotional

I’ve had a lot of you reach out to me through messages and on social media with some of your decluttering challenges. And I decided to write some tips to help get you all through these struggles.

Through the messages that I have been receiving, I’m hearing alot about people are feeling anxious or nervous about this challenge. Letting go of things we have become attached to is hard.

Change is hard. It can be downright scary, but the first step toward this change and having a clutter free home is jumping right in. I struggled when I started getting my home clutter free, but now it feels empowering.

And another thing, we are here to support each other. Reach out to your support person or family member if you’re feeling scared, anxious, nervous about this process.

If you have an item that has true sentimental value to you or great memories tied to and you have the space for it in your home, please keep it displayed in your home. It belongs there.

However, if you are holding on to that sweater in your closet that was a gift from your favorite aunt and you know that you’ll never wear it, donate it.

An important thing to remember, there’s no need to hold on to things that do not have true value in our homes.

Find space for your truly sentimental items.

living room couches and coffee table with house plants on top

Here’s a few things to consider when decluttering:

Do I love it, use it, will use, or wear it within the next six months? If not, I’d say it’s safe to donate or pitch it.

Some people find it beneficial to change out their wardrobes with the seasons. This could be helpful to those of us who have smaller homes and closets. Consider paring down and keeping it simple.

Others find it helpful to keep a limit of the number of hangers in their closets. I like to have less than 50 hangers in mine and that’s for year round clothing.

Having a capsule wardrobe is also helpful for many.

The first step is to get started with a plan – and go slowly.

When you’re decluttering an area, set up four boxes. One filled with items to donate, one to sell, one to trash and one to keep.

Use my Super Detailed Declutter Checklist (sign up below for FREE access)

“A simplified life means that what has to get done will get done. And when we pare down life to its simplest, most beautifully basic parts, we’re left with room to enjoy each other, to rest, and to truly savor life with all our hearts, minds, and spirits.” 

—Emily Ley

🌵A few tips to get started:

  • start small – begin with one area of focus at a time
  • work on mindset and commit to the process
  • get support from a friend or family member
  • delegate some tasks to help you with overwhelm

Decluttering Roadblocks

While doing a little bit of research on what some of the biggest stumbling blocks that come up while going through a declutter and organization session, I found these to be the top issues.

“It was a gift, so I must keep it.”

I totally understand not wanting to hurt someone’s feelings, but it’s important to separate our feelings from items. Does the item make you happy?

Does it lead to clutter or hold does it have value in your home? If it doesn’t add value, get rid of it!

Difficulty in letting go of items of value

“The price that I paid for that item was too high”.

Money is tight for many of us and with the uncertainty of the economy, it is easy to want to save an item for someday.

Remember this, someday may never come. That item may still be taking up valuable storage space in your home.

Consider selling it on a local swap shop or garage sale and put the money from that item into a saving jar for a rainy day.

bathroom countertops with white vase and houseplant

Emotional connection

Probably one of the biggest themes that I have seen that holds many back from decluttering is the emotional connection that is attached to an item.

This is why I saved the sentimental things for the last day. As I mentioned above, there is no need to get rid of an item that is truly special to you.

If you have a place in your home for it, keep it! But, if you’ve grown emotionally attached to an item for any of the reasons that I just mentioned above, please consider getting rid of it

Handling the Overwhelm

Lastly, most of us feel overwhelmed and don’t know where to start when it comes to a declutter session. That is why I’ve created my declutter checklist.

It’s broken down into sections with different areas to focus on each day. This way it doesn’t become too overwhelming and is totally manageable!

Once you get a handle on the material possessions that are cluttering up your home, you will find space for the things that really matter.

And creating daily routines that work best for your family dynamic will help to maintain a simple way of life.

Where would you like to start?

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  1. Thanks for the detailed list! I definitely have nooks and crannies to declutter. My worst problem is paper. What do you suggest for incoming paper (mail, catalogs, important lists, newspapers, etc.)? It seems to end up all over the house and drives me crazy. Thank you for inspiring me to continue the daily challenge of purging!

    1. Hi Kate! Here’s what I do… when it comes to incoming mail, I take care of it right away. I sort through and bills either get them paid right away or in a file folder until I can sit down and take care of them. I save magazines in a magazine folder on a shelf in my office nook. After I read them, they get pitched. I do save specific articles that I want to refer back to and those get clipped and filed in a binder. Same goes for newspapers, after my husband has read over them, I place them in a basket by our wood stove for a fire starter.
      If you don’t already have one set up, I totally recommend a home management binder. I keep a lot of those important lists centralized to one area. Keeps it from getting lost in the house and keeps the clutter away. I hope this helps! 🙂