Clutter happens and it happens fast. It could be a stack of paper that you need to sort through or it could be all of the knick knacks that you find on clearance that would look super cute in your kitchen.
You may think you have it under control, but how many times have you lost something or misplaced a bill? Have you ever bought duplicates of something because you have no idea where the original was? Do you go out to eat because your kitchen is a mess and you cannot handle the stress? Do you have more clothes than you need just because you find them at a great deal?
The truth about clutter is, it is all consuming. Clutter consumes your time, your money and this means it controls you. We live in a time that it is okay to accumulate stuff, but the reality is, this stuff is costing us a lot more than what it is worth.
We are told by marketing campaigns that more is better but when you look into your closet and spend even just 10 minutes looking for that one flower patterned button down shirt you are in over your head. When you are constantly avoiding company because you know there is a layer of dust on all of those cute knick knacks you are in over your head.
Time is not a renewable resource. It is limited but you can reclaim it by decluttering some of the excess. You'll spend less time cleaning and looking and more time living the good life.
Clutter affects our budgets long after the item is bought. It is taking up space that is valuable in our home and even worse, if the clutter starts to get so bad you buy a storage unit. Trying to find ways to organize and hide clutter within the home is also another way that clutter requires money. You have to look at storage boxes and bookshelves but wait, we can make it look just as pretty as we see on Pinterest! Remember that blouse you spent 10 minutes looking for and couldn’t find; having a full closet and not knowing what is there can waste you money. You can easily buy items that are so similar or in my case the exact same top in a new color! No matter how you spin it you are either spending money on upkeep and maintenance or you are spending money to try and make it look pretty which eventually turns into another thing to clean. This cycle can be never ending!
Decluttering is not only good for the soul but it is good for your pocketbook! Decluttering may be intimidating but the time spent getting rid of the excess will save you time later. I do not care how much you spent on the item; if it is not fulfilling a purpose or bringing you instant joy then why pay to upkeep it? When you declutter, you do not have to fill the space back up; in fact, once you declutter, you can save yourself more money by not investing in any more stuff until you need it. You need to find your why for decluttering; for me the adventure started because I realized just how much money we were spending to house all of our extra stuff in a storage unit.
For some, it is just a way to cut back spending, make sure you are paying your bills on time or just wanting to simplify your life. You cannot completely organize your home in an effective manner when you have stuff everywhere. Getting rid of some things may be painful, I finally donated 150 porcelain dolls that sat in totes since I was a kid. These were given to me from my Grandmother but honestly they never saw the light of day. I kept the three I loved and took some pictures of others. Then they went to a donation place and I will have the memories of them.
Keeping things out of loyalty is just silly. One piece of advice I always give is to never buy more space. If you cannot fit everything on that one bookshelf then it is time to start clearing out the old. If you are having to buy an item then start thinking of something you can get rid of. Designate time to start clearing out your clutter; and do this more than once. It may amaze you what you save the first round but donate the next!
Do you have any decluttering tips to share in the comments to help others get started?
RebeccaLynn Bologna is a freelance writer for hire with a background in accounting. With a change of pace you can find her helping others get organized with their office and budgets. She is a wife and mom of three girls all under the age of four. You can also find her future writings at her page.