How to get rid of junk at home in 5 simple steps

The KonMari method not working for you? Try this decluttering method instead. 

messy bedroom

© klotz | 123rf

There’s something about a cluttered room that makes even the calmest person twitch in annoyance. From the T-shirt you received as a free gift to the useless gadgets you bought in the spur of the moment because it’s on sale – having stuff that you don’t actually need lying at home is not only irksome, it’s incredibly stressful as well. 

Getting rid of all that junk can also be a nerve-wracking experience. Where do you even begin? How do you differentiate trash from reusable items? 

Fortunately, there are easy ways to declutter your home and make it look brand new. The next time you are overwhelmed with the amount of junk you have at home, just take a deep breath and read this guide to ditch all the unnecessary items you have!

Step 1: Set a Goal

Write a goal for the new year 2010 in a white notebook on a white desktop next to a coffee mug and a keyboard. Top view, flat layout.

© Olga Vorobeva | 123rf

Ask yourself: What are you trying to get out of this? It’s always easier to go through with the decluttering process if you have an end goal. Find a day, sit down and set those goals and how are you going to achieve it. You can start by setting a small goal like cleaning your closet. It doesn’t matter how small your goals are, as long as you put things into motion. 

Step 2: Sort it out

©Jamie Grill/gettyimages

Before you get started, set up three different stations to separate your trash from the items that you want to keep. You can either use a container box or a bag to divide the stations. Then, label “throw”, “keep” and “donate” on each box.

Step 3: Set Ground Rules

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It’s easy to have everything end up in your “keep” pile. Whether you’re a hoarder or not, you’ve got to admit that some things hold too many memories or sentimental value for us. Which is why it’s important to set ground rules before you start. 

Set a rule around the number of years it’s been with you. For example, if a piece of clothing has been with you for more than five years and you’ve only worn it once, throw it (or donate it if it’s still in good condition). You can also set a rule about clothing size. If a piece of clothing no longer fits, donate it. 

The type of rules you set should depend on the items you have at home, then it’ll be easier for you to stick to it. Be strict with yourself. If something’s been left untouched for years, put it in the throw or donate box. Keeping it for another year won’t make you use the item. 

Step 4: Get Started

basket storage

© littleny | 123rf

Now, it’s time to put things into motion. Start small by going from room to room. The easiest place to start is your bedroom because it’s the place you spend most of your time in. Take those three boxes with you and start sorting. 

You can even follow Marie Kondo’s decluttering method. First, take all of your clothes and pile them up on your bed. Then take the time to examine each piece and ask yourself if it really sparks joy for you. If it doesn’t, then you know which box it should be in. 

Step 5: Maintain your lifestyle

Congratulations, you’ve made it! Take a look around your home, it is now less cluttered than before. Doesn’t it feel more refreshing? Now comes the hard part — maintenance. 

No matter how determined you are to keep your home junk-free, sometimes it’s easy to fall back to old habits of buying things we don’t actually need. Especially during the sales period. But it’s okay, we’re only human. Sometimes we have to give in to temptation. 

If you want to avoid things like this from happening, again, remember Step 3 and set some ground rules to follow! The next time you’re buying something new, ask yourself this: Do you actually need it? Think it over and give yourself one week to decide. If you’re still tempted to get it, then, by all means, go for it. But remember, this doesn’t apply to items that you need instantly like medicine!

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