It happens to the best of us although we probably wouldn't want to admit it. Our homes become cluttered and disorganized because, let's be honest, who has the time or energy to keep up with a clean and organized house. In reality though, keeping your house clean and clutter free can make your life so much simpler - and it doesn't have to be that hard. You'll save money, time and emotional stress by having everything in its place. All it takes is a few supplies, a day's worth of cleaning and this 30-day plan for organizing and you'll be on your way to a clutter free life!
Begin by asking yourself the following questions and get rid of items based on your answers (and remember, be honest)!
1. Do I see myself using this in the next 12 months?
If you can't see yourself using an item in the next 12 months, get rid of it. Have a concrete plan on how you're going to use that item and make sure you set a timeline for its use.
2. Does it fit in my space or with my lifestyle?
An item you bought years ago won't always fit in your current space, or may not suit your current style. Remember you only have so much room in your living space - does that dog statue you bought years ago really deserve a place in your room?
3. Is the item broken?
Be honest with yourself - are you really going to fix that broken lamp that's been sitting in your hall closet? Either fix the item now or if it doesn't get done in two weeks, then get rid of it.
4. Did I actually use this in the last 12 months?
If the answer is no, then out to the trash it goes.
5. Is it something I would buy right now?
If it's not something you can see yourself purchasing right now, then there's no point in keeping it for the future.
6. Am I holding on to something because I feel like I've wasted my money?
The answer may be yes but it's not a good enough reason to keep something you aren't going to use. Think of it as a lesson instead on buying things you only really want/need.
7. Am I keeping it for sentimental reasons?
Really try to limit the amount of sentimental items you keep. Store them in a memorabilia box for safekeeping. If you're really having a hard time letting go, take a photo of the items that you are throwing away so that you can hold on to the memory.
Now that the purging process has begun, you'll need four empty carboard boxes or trash bags with the following labels:
- Garage Sale
- Put Away (in another room)
- Throw Away
Over the next 30 days, go through the following items and decide which boxes they should go into. Plan to tackle 1-3 rooms a week depending on the size of your space.
- Expired skin care products
- Bath and body products
- Makeup sponges
- Body mitts and loofas
- Hair elastics
- Souvenirs or knick-knacks
- Frayed or stained clothes
- Shopping bags
- Containers with no lids
- Junk food
- Fridge (expired food, leftovers etc.)
- Kitchen gadgets and equipment
- Pet supplies
- Expired condiments and canned goods
- Old spices
- Clothes that don't fit
- Shoes and purses
- Scarves and accessories
- Old clothes
- Unmatched socks
- Old files
- Devices that don't work
- Glove box tray
Now that you've gone through every room in your house and purged completely, it's time to clean!
Below are the 10 most common areas of your home and ways to keep them naturally clean. Commit at least one day to do a deep clean of your house so that all you'll need to do going forward is to maintain your work.
1. Kitchen Sink
- Sprinkle with salt and scrub with a cut lemon.
- Rinse and dry.
- Make a paste using 1/4 cup cream of tartar and 2 tbsp hydrogen peroxide.
- Mix together and spread the paste out over the sink with a cloth.
- For an all-purpose cleaning spray, mix 1 cup vinegar and 2 cups water.
- Add 20 drops essential oils like eucalyptus, tea tree, and lavender.
- Spray counters and wipe with a dry cloth.
- Mix 2 tablespoons baking soda with 4 cups warm water.
- Remove all the food from your fridge and use the baking soda mix and a soft cloth to clean all surfaces.
- Remove all drawers and wash either with the baking soda mixture or dish soap.
- Dry all surfaces before replacing food.
4. The Toilets
- Scrub your toilet with this natural cleaning solution: 1/4 to ½ cup vinegar and 1 or 2 drops of tea tree essential oil.
- Let sit for 1 hour.
- Scrub again and flush the toilet.
5. Dusting for Non-wood
- Mix 1 tablespoon castile soap with 1 cup water and 10 dropslemon essential oil.
- Spray on your cloth and dust.
30 days may seem like a long time, but it's worth it to know that you'll be on your way to an organized and clutter free existence. By purging your things, decluttering and getting your home naturally clean, you'll surely avoid feeling overwhelmed on a daily basis and your life will start to become simpler. It only takes 30 days!