Written by Carla Whyte
Decluttering your home for maximizing your space
Spring cleaning season is almost upon us! And there's nothing wrong with getting a head start. Spring cleaning is such a wonderful way to breathe fresh air into your home, and release the clutter that's been weighing you down! With almost 10 years of organizing experience, I've developed my own effective process for doing this, and I've also incorporated parts of Marie Kondo's process too (author of The Life Changing Magic of Tidying Up and Netflix host of Tidying Up With Marie Kondo). Kondo calls her method for helping people let go of clutter the KonMari Method.
After reading her book and KonMari-ing my own home with the help of another organizer, I find I agree with these certain aspects of her method:
- First step is to discard as much as you can
- Focus more on what you're keeping than on what you're discarding
- Hold each item in your hand and decide whether or not it "sparks joy" for you. By doing this, we surround ourselves with items we love - beautiful decor, pictures, and clothes that fit.
Doesn't that sound wonderful? I love this idea! This actually makes it easier to let go of things. Also, while we are letting go, she asks us to thank each item for serving us well, and say goodbye to each of them. A bit silly, but what's the harm in trying something new?
During the discarding, she recommends we look at one category of items at time, and in a specific order, starting with clothing. She says to gather every piece of clothing from around the whole house into a big pile, and then focus on which pieces spark joy. I find this step can be a bit unrealistic for most of my clients while organizing, because it can be hugely overwhelming, time consuming, and few people have the stamina for it. Even I felt exhausted after each 4 or 5 hour session, and I LOVE organizing. But if you feel like giving it a try, you can decide for yourself if it's helpful.
The KonMari order for purging the rest of the items in your home is as follows:
- Komono (Miscellaneous)
- Sentimental items (Memorabilia)
In my own experience, tackling one room or small area at a time, works great. My method is to sort items into bins labeled Donations, Trash, Recycling, and Another Room -- then I go to work organizing the items to be kept. My clients see visible progress in a short amount of time, and it keeps them from feeling overwhelmed. This keeps them motivated to keep going! A worthy endeavor -- take advantage of spring and begin your own de-clutter process today
Carla Whyte, Organizer and founder of Embracing Your Space, is a regular contributor to the Heart of the Home category on our blog at Kelsey Lane & Team Real Estate. Visit her website at www.EmbracingYourSpace.com