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Time to Declutter

By Elaine Elliott

Spring is here and you know what that means, time for spring cleaning!

The buds are blooming, warm weather is arriving, and your house deserves a pick-me-up just in time for summer parties and family events.
We know these tasks aren’t simple, so here are some tips for decluttering your home.


Separate Chores by Room-

Dedicate to cleaning a new area in your home rather than overwhelming yourself with a frenzy of tasks. For example, each evening for an entire week you can clean one of the following spaces: bathroom, bedroom, closet, kitchen, computer files, and filing cabinet.


If you want to get even more detailed, you can separate each space by time intervals dedicated to each task needed. Here are some examples for the bedroom and kitchen:


Bedroom Cleaning:

- 5 minutes for making the bed

- 10 minutes for sweeping the floor and underneath the bed

- 10 minutes for clearing surfaces and dusting

- 10 minutes for folding clothes and organizing laundry

- 15 minutes for organizing nightstand drawers 


Kitchen Cleaning:

- 10 minutes for cleaning dishes

- 5 minutes for wiping and disinfecting surfaces and appliances

- 15 minutes for organizing and cleaning the fridge

- 10 minutes for organizing the pantry

Once you divvy up the to-do list by a timeframe, you’ll see it really doesn’t take very long to clean an entire room.


Remove Items One at a Time-

When you’re organizing each space, whether it’s a drawer or shelf, remove every single item from the zone. Now you have the opportunity to dust the area and reorganize your items. Look at each item and decide whether to keep it or throw it away. This exercise in acknowledging each object makes it easier to decide whether or not it’s worth keeping around. During this process, label your boxes and bins so it’s easier to remember where everything is located.


Don’t Be Afraid to Say Goodbye-

One reason our houses are cluttered is that we have a hard time throwing away things we don’t need. Promote a minimalistic space by tossing items that you no longer use on a regular basis. Once you figure out what you want to get rid of, inventory these items into a box for Goodwill donations.


Less stuff in your house means less stress! The more stuff you have, the more you have to clean and organize. If you always find yourself misplacing the things you do need, then it’s time to get rid of the unnecessary clutter.


Complete a Deep Cleaning Checklist-

You might clean all the time, but what about deep cleaning? A very detailed checklist can help you remember the dusty corners often forgotten about. For example, take this time to clean your baseboards, replace the air filter, dust lampshades, wipe the top of ceiling fans, and more. Search for deep cleaning tick lists online and archive the sheet for thorough cleaning each month.


Reward Yourself-

Treat yourself after a job well done! Play your favorite music during the cleaning process, and then celebrate your progress afterward with your favorite dessert or drink. Once your area is clutter-free, you might even have a little extra space to gift yourself a new outfit or cooking accessory.


Rewards could also come in the form of charitable deductions on tax returns. After you clear out all the clothes, trinkets, and books you no longer need, donate the items to your local Goodwill. Or make a few extra bucks by hosting a garage sale.


In the midst of cleaning did you find forgotten boxes full of old family photos or film? Remember to digitize your memories with KODAK Digitizing Box. This is truly the biggest reward of them all! Once you’re done cleaning, you can put these new digital files onto a slideshow to show the whole family.

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