Here is some simple advice for decluttering your drawer, closet, or room. Before you start, label 3 areas or boxes with “Keep”, “Recycle or Toss”, and “Donate”. Every item must fit into one of the 3 categories. Then follow these 4 simple guidelines and you’ll have that space neat and clean in no time.

  1. Stay focused: Remember, the point is to weed out or declutter, not to read and reminisce about every item.
  2. Keep moving forward: No going back in the trash or recycle pile to rescue anything unless you accidentally through away money!
  3. Use a ticking timer: Whether you set an actual timer, or watch the clock, set it in 15-minute increments to create a sense of urgency. It also makes the chore more like a game.
  4. If you’re stuck and can’t decide: whether to keep, toss, recycle, or put it back, ask yourself:
    • Did you even remember that you had this? No? Then it must not be that important to you.
    • If you tossed it, could you buy something like it again if you had to, and would it be worth it?
    • If you keep it, will you know where to find it and not lose it again, or will it just end up in the back of your closet again?

Purging useless or unwanted stuff can be really rewarding. It keeps you calm when every item has its place; you’ll know where to find your things, and it keeps you from rebuying or overbuying something you already had. Saves sanity, time, and money…what could be better than that?