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How to Declutter Your Home: A Step-by-Step Guide

Updated: Feb 20

Coat rack on the wall with two hats and some scarves

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Is your home feeling cluttered and overwhelming? Are you looking to simplify your life and create a more organized living space? Decluttering your home can be a big task, but with the right approach, it can become a manageable and even enjoyable process. In this step-by-step guide, we will explore effective strategies to help you declutter your home and create a space that promotes peace and productivity.

The Importance of Decluttering

Clutter not only affects the physical appearance of your home but can also have a negative impact on your mental well-being. Living in a cluttered environment can lead to increased stress, decreased focus, and a feeling of being overwhelmed. On the other hand, a clutter-free space can promote a sense of calmness, improve productivity, and create a more welcoming atmosphere.

Stage 1: Creating a Decluttering Plan

Before diving into the decluttering process, it's essential to create a plan that outlines your goals, timeline, and priorities. This will help you stay focused and organized throughout the process. Here's how to create a decluttering plan:

Step 1: Assess Your Space

Begin by assessing each room in your home and identifying areas that require the most attention. Make a list of the rooms or zones within a room that you want to tackle first. This will help you prioritize your efforts and create a roadmap for decluttering.

Step 2: Set Realistic Goals

Decluttering your entire home in one day may not be realistic, especially if you have a substantial amount of clutter. Instead, break down the process into manageable tasks and set realistic goals for each session. You can choose to declutter one room per day or focus on specific areas within a room.

Step 3: Create a Timeline

Once you have identified your goals, create a timeline for your decluttering project. This timeline can be as short as a weekend or as long as a month, depending on the amount of clutter and the time you have available. Make sure to allocate buffer time in case things don't go according to plan.

Step 4: Gather Supplies

Before you begin decluttering, gather the necessary supplies to make the process smoother. Some essential items include storage containers, trash bags, recycling bins, and cleaning supplies. Having these items on hand will help you sort and organize your belongings effectively.

Lady in the living room organizing with donation boxes in front of her

Stage 2: Sorting and Organizing

With your decluttering plan in place, it's time to start sorting and organizing your belongings. To streamline the process, use containers designated for different purposes. Here are the containers you should have:

Put Away

Items that have strayed from their designated storage spaces should be placed in the "Put Away" container. This could include items that were left out on countertops, tables, or other surfaces. Make it a habit to return these items to their proper places regularly to prevent future clutter.


The "Fix/Mend" container is for items that require some form of repair or maintenance before they can be put away. This could include clothes with missing buttons, electronics that need troubleshooting, or furniture in need of minor repairs. Set aside time to address these items before returning them to their designated storage spaces.


The "Recycle" container is for items that can be recycled rather than thrown away. This could include paper, cardboard, plastic, or glass items that can be recycled according to your local recycling guidelines. Make sure to rinse and clean any items before placing them in the recycling bin.


The "Trash" container is for items that are no longer usable or valuable and can be disposed of in the household trash. This could include broken or damaged items, expired products, or items that are beyond repair. Dispose of these items responsibly and according to your local waste management regulations.


The "Donate" container is for items that are in good condition but no longer needed or wanted. These items can be donated to charitable organizations or given to friends, family, or neighbors who might benefit from them. Make sure to research local donation centers or organizations that accept specific items you wish to donate.

Stage 3: Decluttering Room by Room

Now that you have your containers ready, it's time to dive into the decluttering process. Remember to start small and focus on one room or zone within a room at a time. Completing each decluttering task fully before moving on to the next will help you stay motivated and see progress. Here's how to declutter each room in your home:

1. Kitchen

The kitchen is often a hotspot for clutter, with overflowing cabinets, crowded countertops, and miscellaneous items. Begin by emptying one cabinet or drawer at a time and sorting its contents into the designated containers. Assess each item and decide if it's something you use regularly or if it can be donated, recycled, or thrown away. Clean and organize the empty space before returning the essentials.

2. Living Room

The living room is a space where clutter can accumulate quickly, from stacks of magazines to scattered remote controls. Start by clearing any visible clutter from tables, shelves, and surfaces. Sort through books, magazines, and other items, placing them in the appropriate containers. Create designated storage areas for frequently used items and consider implementing organizational solutions such as baskets or bins.

3. Bedroom

The bedroom should be a sanctuary for relaxation and rest. Begin by decluttering your wardrobe, sorting clothes into categories such as keep, donate, or mend. Assess accessories, shoes, and other items, making decisions based on their value and usefulness. Clear any items from under the bed and organize the space to maximize storage potential.

4. Bathroom

Bathrooms can easily become cluttered with expired products, unused toiletries, and excess towels. Start by discarding any expired medications, cosmetics, or skincare products. Sort through towels and linens, donating or recycling any that are no longer in good condition. Organize toiletries, cleaning supplies, and other items in designated storage areas.

5. Home Office

A cluttered home office can hinder productivity and make it challenging to focus on tasks. Begin by sorting through paperwork, filing important documents, and shredding or recycling unnecessary papers. Evaluate office supplies and gadgets, keeping only those that are essential. Create an organized system for storing pens, paper clips, and other small items.

lady on a ladder to reach top shelf of her closet

Additional Tips for Successful Decluttering

Decluttering your home is a process that requires persistence and commitment. Here are some additional tips to help you stay on track and make the most of your decluttering journey:

1. Take breaks: Decluttering can be physically and mentally demanding, so take regular breaks to rest and recharge.

2. Enlist help: If decluttering your home feels overwhelming, consider enlisting the help of a friend or family member. Having a second pair of hands can make the process more enjoyable and efficient.

3. Establish routines: Once you've decluttered your home, establish routines to maintain an organized space. Set aside time each day or week to tidy up, put items away, and prevent clutter from accumulating.

4. Practice mindful consumption: To prevent future clutter, practice mindful consumption by being intentional about the items you bring into your home. Before making a purchase, consider if the item aligns with your needs and values.

5. Celebrate progress: Acknowledge your achievements and celebrate the progress you've made throughout the decluttering process. Reward yourself with something meaningful or treat yourself to a clutter-free space.

Remember, decluttering is an ongoing process, and it's normal for clutter to accumulate over time. By adopting a systematic approach and incorporating these tips into your routine, you can create a home that is organized, serene, and conducive to a balanced lifestyle.

Now it's time to roll up your sleeves, gather your containers, and embark on your decluttering journey. Good luck!

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