Are You Ready For The Easy Peasy 2019 Declutter Your Home Challenge?
Are you desperate to declutter your home this year but quite frankly not interested in spending every waking moment doing so?
Why not declutter your home on your terms not someone else’s?
I’ve read so many decluttering books, articles and challenges searching for one that tells me I can achieve the decluttered look without giving up my life to do so.
Too many of them involve so much work!
When you’ve got family, jobs, a house and all the responsibilities that go with them.
You can’t afford the time to start emptying your entire wardrobe to start picking over it, item by item.
Yes, you are willing to invest some time in following great decluttering tips.
But no, you are not willing or able to invest all your time. Life still has to be lived.
But why even bother attempting to declutter your home? Would it not be easier to just live with the mess and clutter you have built up? Actually no!
Let’s fast forward to when you finish decluttering your home. What results will you have to look forward to?
- Your home will feel calmer, more spacious and more relaxing
- You will have a fabulous sense of achievement, of a job well done
- You will feel so much more prepared to face the future and all that it brings
- Less stress when you are getting everyone into a routine
- Your weekly cleaning routine will be much quicker and simpler
- You won’t get that overwhelm feeling – overwhelmed by how much stuff you seem to have everywhere
- All those dog-eared books, broken toys, and messy paperwork piles will be gone
- You will feel more in control of your life and your home
Think how much more you can achieve if you feel calm, in control and organised!
As much as I love a simplified life and living with less stuff I am not suggesting you throw yourself into the minimalism movement today.
No, this is about clearing out those areas that you keep meaning to but never quite get around to it.
Often all these tasks get lumped together into one big overwhelming job that you put off because it is just too big to tackle.
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Other Decluttering Challenges
I know there are many different decluttering challenges out there. I’ve probably read most of them and planned to do them.
But never quite achieved any. Why not? Maybe it’s just me, but I often talk myself out of them on the basis they are going to be too much work:
- Daily decluttering challenge
- 30 day organising challenge
- 91 day declutter challenge
- 90 declutter challenge
- 365 day declutter challenge
The Daily Decluttering Challenge
I’m just not organised or motivated enough to do a daily declutter challenge. I’ve previously tried Fly Lady as a way to keep my house spick and span, and failed miserably.
I don’t want to have to do a daily declutter every day, same as I don’t want to stick to a imposed cleaning regime.
30 Day Organising Challenge
I like the idea of the 30 day organising challenge as it’s about small actions every day.
But I can be very bad at following a routine on an ongoing basis. I always forget a few days here and there and then give up because I’m not doing it ‘properly’.
91 Declutter Challenge And 90 Declutter Challenge
I’m not sure why there is both a 91 day declutter challenge AND a 90 day declutter challenge?
Maybe the people who created them consider 3 months slightly differently?
Anyway, as per the 30 day declutter challenge, anything long winded and scheduled is likely to cause me to fail.
I think my failure is more about me putting up obstacles to success than these challenges themselves!
How To Work Through This Guide
I’ve broken down that impossible, overwhelming, ‘declutter my house’ task into bite sized chunks that you won’t need to procrastinate over.
When you declutter your home, splitting it into defined areas to concentrate on allows you to focus and not have that ‘can’t see the woods for the trees’ feeling.
This declutter your home guide is not designed for you to do all of the projects in one go (but you are welcome to do so).
It’s about choosing your priorities and being mindful of how much you can realistically achieve given you have a busy life already.
Pick and choose which tasks will help you and your home feel calmer and more clutter free. This is not a to do list of which all must be completed immediately.
No, this is a choose some time, maybe each day, maybe at the weekend and achieve something visible. Something that you know you will immediately benefit from.
I know I won’t be able to declutter my home in one week so I intend to chose the ones that will make me feel better immediately and work more slowly on the others.
Declutter Your Home – The 2019 Easy Peasy Declutter Challenge
“How do you eat and elephant? One bite at a time”
Declutter Challenge – Kids Spaces
I have thankfully gone past the kids with mountains of toys phase, but it is still burned upon my brain.
All those huge plastic toys that won’t fit neatly in a toy box.
The toys your kids insist on keeping in the living room – why is it always the biggest, brightest, ugliest toys?
Declutter The Toys – 20 minutes
Kids are all about toys. And they always end up with many more toys than they need or you want them to have.
So if you are on a mission to declutter your home, a gentle purge of outgrown, broken or unloved toys is a must.
Decluttering toys can also make space for new toys your kids will inevitably receive in the near future.
Sort through the toys in your living spaces and divide them into these categories:
Many toys are in great condition but your kids have outgrown them. A great decluttering tip is to donate these to your local charity shop and allow another child the pleasure of playing with them.
Some toys do not stand the test of time or were only ever a one time thing – maybe from a party bag or school fair. Don’t keep for the sake of keeping.
Declutter your life by assigning them to the toy box in the sky and create some space.
Children’s Bookcase = 10 mins
I don’t know about your kids but mine always managed to amass a pile of books from birthdays, charity shops and school fairs.
They quickly tire or grow out of them so a decluttering and organising purge is always useful to do. You might even want to do this on a more regular basis!
Follow the same principles of keep, donate and chuck.
Clothes Storage = 15 minustes
Kids grow up so quickly it can feel like you are constantly buying new clothes for their every increasing height. But even when they aren’t having a growth spurt their clothes can become in need of a good sort through.
Kids are hard on their clothes so weed out all the stained, stretched and beyond repair items.
Bite the bullet on those clothes your kids refuse to wear, you know the ones you bought because you loved them but your kids hate?
Donate or sell what you can so they have a second life.
Declutter Challenge – Adult Spaces
I don’t know about you but often my bedroom and other adult spaces become a dumping ground for things that don’t have a home.
Like the dressmakers mannequin currently in my bedroom. It was DD2’s but she decluttered her bedroom over the summer and this got cut.
I keep meaning to sell it as I am sure I could get a few pounds for it but it hasn’t happened so in my bedroom it still is.
I am determined to really declutter my home this time so it has to go!
Bedroom – 15 minutes
Your bedroom is your sanctuary, more so at busy times of the year. As part of your challenge to declutter your home make sure you prioritise creating a calming space in your bedroom.
Clear your surfaces and find a permanent home for those items you’ve dumped temporarily in your bedroom.
Don’t think too long and hard about what to keep and where to re-home items. Go with your gut instinct.
This is about achieving small wins in a short space of time.
Don’t make it into a difficult, big task.
Guest Bedrooms – 30 minutes
If you don’t have regular visitors your spare bedrooms really can become a dumping ground for all manner of things. Summer clothes, things for the attic, walking gear.
And that’s just me I’m talking to!
Your guests will have overnight bags, need somewhere to place their discarded clothes and of course somewhere to sleep.
Getting these prepared in advance means on arrival day all you need to do is make the bed (if you haven’t already).
- Clear surfaces of clutter – chuck or re-home
- Empty a drawer or two for use by your guests
- Clear and make the bed ready for use
- Give everything a quick wipe down
Your Bathroom – 15 minutes
Bathrooms can collect all sorts of half used bottles of shampoos, knick-knacks and other things that clutter up the surfaces.
Towel storage can become a bit haphazard and other items can find their way into your bathroom over a few months.
Sort through the bottles in your shower cubicle or on your bath shelf – reduce these to regularly used ones only. How many shampoo bottles does one need at any one time?
Same for shower gel, conditioner and other bathing products.
Clear the surfaces so only the in-use practical items are on show. Perhaps 2 knick-knacks as your design features but too many makes for a cluttered space.
Cleaning products – store these in the bathroom cupboard not by your sanitary ware. And no need to have multiple bottles of cleaner!
Plants – personally I’m not a fan of plants in the bathroom (or anywhere inside for that matter), mainly because I am just too good at killing them.
Dead plants are not a good look!
Plants can look messy and drop leaves and petals. If you are an indoor plant lover, perhaps reduce to one stylish plant.
Guest Bathrooms – 10 minutes
Disclaimer – we don’t have a guest bathroom so thankfully I haven’t got this on my to do list. But if you do then let’s get it organised and ready for a brand new organised and decluttered home.
Quick and easy decluttering tips:
- Have one of each bathing product in your shower (shampoo, conditioner and shower gel or soap)
- Tidy your guest towels and store them artfully like they do in hotels
- Keep cleaning products to a minimum and out of sight
- Have a couple of home décor styling additions, clear any excess
- Plants – don’t have plants in your guest bathroom, you know you’re going to forget to water them and then they won’t look so good.
For decluttering tips when you’re running out of time and need to take fast action have a read of this post:
Declutter Challenge – Your Kitchen
Whether you have a large family or not you probably spend a good chunk of time in your kitchen.
To organise and declutter your kitchen action steps are what you need.
After all I bet tidying and sorting your kitchen stuff is not on your priority list after a long day at work.
It certainly isn’t on mine!
When you declutter your home you have the opportunity to create a more spacious, organised space.
This will help you keep calm whilst juggling your every day life and the long days ahead.
How much kitchenware a person needs is very much dependent on their lifestyle, their family size and their kitchen size.
For me I like clear surfaces where possible which means my food processor lives in a cupboard. A friend of mine uses her processor on a daily basis so this doesn’t work for her.
Organise And Declutter Your Kitchen Action Steps
Clear Your Worktop – 15 minutes
I feel so much calmer in my kitchen if on entering it, there are clear work surfaces wherever I look.
It’s all too easy though to create little piles of items waiting to be actioned or filed or put away.
Then you end up with cluttered work surfaces and your kitchen is no longer the calm, comforting space you want it to be.
Appliances – if you have the space put as many of these away as possible. How often do you use your toaster – once a day?
It takes 15 seconds to pull a toaster from the cupboard and plug it in. Personally I will be making an exception for my kettle. It can and is used multiple times a day.
You know us Brits and our love of a cup of tea!
Try to get your work surfaces completely clear (apart from my kettle) and keep them that way in the coming weeks. You’ll thank yourself, honestly!
Kitchen Drawers – 15 minutes
Kitchen drawers can become a breeding ground of broken bits, batteries, pieces of paper, elastic bands and numerous other little bits. I hope it’s not just me!
Never mind all the food bits that find their way in – raisins, toast crumbs and sugar are often in mine.
Declutter your home and your kitchen by taking out each drawer and quickly go through them discarding everything that shouldn’t be there.
Give them a quick wipe down and then put the right contents back neatly.
Utensils & Kitchenware – 30-60 minutes
This might be one of those decluttering tasks that you need to be in the right frame of mind.
However if you’ve collected an awful lot of excess kitchenware, reducing these down to just what you need could be very freeing.
To declutter your home and specifically all your kitchenware, think along the lines of:
- Cutlery – do you have more than one set? Do you need more than one set?
- Crockery set – have you ended up with more than one set? Is now the time to get rid of one?
- Serving dishes – how many have you actually used over the past year? And how many will you honestly use this year?
- Glasses – how many do you have and how many do you need?
Depending on the age of your children you might choose to box up and keep some of your excess.
When both DD1 and DD2 went away to university we were able to provide them with a fair chunk of their kitchenware requirements from previous decluttering events.
Which just goes to show you how much stuff we can all accumulate.
Cooking Implements – 10 minutes
Pans – Exactly how many pots and pans do you have? Recently we had reached 3 sets of 3! Plus all the extras like a large casserole pan, wok and various frying pans.
Luckily DD2 went away to university and took a set with her.
Be honest, if you’re not using one or more of your pans then don’t hang onto it ‘just in case’ get rid and create space in your cupboards.
Baking trays – these tend to deteriorate over time yet we all try to get another use out of them before giving up and chucking out.
Now’s the time to get rid of those baking trays that are on their last legs.
Declutter Challenge – Living Spaces
Our living spaces are the places we want to spend time with family in. To relax and re-charge our batteries after a hard day’s work.
To enjoy our weekends and precious time off with family.
Create the beautiful, clutter free space you want by taking some time now.
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Hallway & Porch – 20 minutes
In winter your hallway can become festooned with coats, hats, scarves and shoes. Many of which don’t get used as we all tend to wear the same coat day in day out.
Whittle down the coats to one each and store the excess in your bedroom wardrobes out of sight.
Shoe rack – purge your shoe rack of all the summer shoes and sandals leaving only those shoes and boots that are being actively worn.
2 pairs per person is plenty. The additional pairs can be in bedroom wardrobes.
Windowsills and shelving areas – these can quickly become a dumping ground for things coming in from the outside. Pinecones, stones, dried flowers, leaflets, magazines and opened letters.
The best decluttering tip I can give you is to get rid of as much as possible here. Aim for clear surfaces as you declutter your home.
Clutter Free Dining Room/Area – 20 minutes
Trying to have a proper family meal when your dining table is covered in stuff is no fun. What stuff am I talking about?
Paperwork, kids items, things you brought home from work, receipts, you name it, it’s probably ended up in a pile on your dining table. It certainly has on mine!
Quick and easy decluttering tips:
- Clear your papers – action then file them as soon as you get them
- Kids items – they don’t belong on your table, pop them back where they belong
- Clear your table and have a beautiful simple centre piece as a focal point
- Other furniture such as a sideboard should have their surfaces clear
- Remove the excess furniture that may have crept in to your dining room (how does that happen anyway?)
Rethink Your Living Room – 20 minutes
Given you are on a mission to declutter your home think about this: is your living space set up the way you want it to be?
Perhaps your window sills, mantelpiece and other surfaces have become a little too cluttered? Take some time today to re-think what you have in your living room:
What is your focal point? Each other? Fireplace? TV?
Does your seating and sofa’s reflect your focal points or do you end up twisting your body round every evening trying to get comfortable?
Rearrange your furniture to suit how you relax in your living room whether that is chatting with family, watching TV or reading books.
Clear your surfaces so you have less busyness going on in this room
If toys are part of your life, create storage so they are not on show in the evenings. Bright red and yellow plastic toys are not relaxing on the eye!
Decluttering Tips For Your Bookshelves – 30 minutes
Bookshelves always seem to become more cluttered as the weeks and months go past. Things that don’t have a home can be placed on them temporarily yet remain there long term.
Books start out neatly lined up and become a higgledy piggledy mess.
Firstly you want to decide what will stay on your decluttered bookshelf. Use the same maxim as before:
Books that make the keep list should be ones you know you will read again or refer to.
Unless they were a present from a special person that you can’t bear to part with (are you sure?)
For books that are staying, stack them neatly, perhaps going from large to small. I like to line them up so they all sit the same distance from the shelf edge.
For everything else, find a new home or confirm it’s home on the bookshelf. Don’t allow yourself to keep clutter. Less is more.
Mantelpieces, Windowsills And Shelves – 15 minutes
These flat surfaces can become a magnet for all sorts: ornaments, cards, missing bits just found, things acting as reminders and just stuff!
I am a great believer in clear surfaces.
When you declutter your home try to reduce what you have on all surfaces to an absolute minimum. You will gain space and calmness.
Never mind the fact that cleaning just got super easy!