You come home one night, tired and exhausted and it all dawns on you. You get up, walk around the house, and see a lot of things you really don’t need or no longer use that are taking up a lot of space.
You find it hard to relax and rest because it’s either you feel the need to clean up every time you see the clutter or you get stressed out with the mess around the house.
So you put your foot down and tell yourself enough is enough, It’s time to get rid of the things that add to your stress. You finally decide to declutter.
What is decluttering?
By definition, decluttering is just the act of removing unnecessary things from an overcrowded and untidy space. Decluttering is an important aspect of taking care of one’s home and health.
As a form of self-care, it helps you take control of your possessions, your home, and ultimately, your life that improves your overall well-being.
But as helpful as decluttering is, if done wrong, it only makes things worse for you. You might end up with an even bigger pile of mess than when you started and leave you feeling more frustrated for failing to hit your goal.
So we have compiled a short list of some of the most common mistakes people do when decluttering so you know what to avoid to make the process easier and faster.
10 Things to Avoid Doing When Decluttering
1. Underestimating the task
Depending on how much clutter you have, it could be a herculean task. If you’re in a situation like that, it might take you more than just a few hours. It might even take you a few days. So don’t bite off more than you can chew. Set aside time for it and ask for help if you need it.
2. Having no goals in mind
Decluttering is not an easy task to accomplish. You will get tired. You will get distracted. For this reason, you need to have clear goals in mind that will motivate you and keep you from giving up.
3. Convincing yourself to keep things
When you start going through all your stuff, certain thoughts will run through your mind about how you can probably use them one day. Don’t give in to it because, chances are, you will convince yourself to not throw them out because of your just-in-cases.
4. Not following through
Keep in mind that decluttering is not done until all your junk is out of the house. After you segregate your keepers from the ones you’re getting rid of, make sure you throw them out, otherwise, if you leave them lying around in your garage or basement, they might find their way back to where they came from.
5. Cleaning and tidying up instead of decluttering
Don’t fall into the trap of needing to clean up the areas you declutter. It’s important to keep your focus.
If you don’t want to make such a mess while decluttering, put the things you’re disposing of in a trash bag or some bins. For some of the bigger stuff, find out if there are garbage bin rental services in your area.
6. Decluttering other people’s stuff
One cardinal rule of decluttering: touch not other people’s stuff. ; If you live with someone and you’re in a decluttering mode, never take out stuff that’s not yours unless you want to start a fight. Before you get started, make sure you let the others know what you’re about to do. Maybe you can even convince them to join you.
7. Doing it when you’re not feeling it
Just like everything else, when you’re not in the mood to do it and you force yourself, you might end up frustrated and discouraged when you don’t accomplish what you set out to do.
8. Organizing before decluttering
Let’s be clear with one thing: organizing and decluttering are two different things. Ideally, you get rid of all the stuff first then you clean up. Once done, that’s when you start to put things in order.
9. Trying to sell your clutter
Normally, when you declutter, you categorize things into ones that you will keep, ones to give away, ones to sell, and ones to be thrown away. it’s okay to identify which ones you plan to sell but don’t start selling while you’re decluttering. Do it on a separate day so you can work more efficiently.
10. Getting nostalgic
Going through all of your junk might cause you to be nostalgic and sentimental. It’s normal to feel that way. However, don’t let nostalgia keep you from achieving your goal. Otherwise, every little thing that has a memory attached to it will not make it past your door.
The most important thing to remember when you declutter is your whys. If you feel like you’re getting sidetracked, they will keep you motivated to see it to the end.