During the month of January I participated in a decluttering challenge group on Facebook. The idea is that you get rid of one item on Day 1, two items on Day 2, three items on Day 3, etc. By the end of the 31 days, your house is 496 items lighter.
Did I actually get rid of that much? No. I didn’t keep up with it every day. And a few of my decluttering jobs yielded so many tiny items that I didn’t actually count the number. But I DID get rid of more than I would have otherwise which is a good thing.
- I cleaned out the bottom part of our linen closet and threw away a couple of wastebaskets full.
- I cleaned out the large, middle drawer of my desk, yielding half a large wastebasket full.
- I hauled three large plastic totes FULL of clothing, books, kitchen items, etc. to the local Re-Use Center, as well as an old television.
It’s the tip of the iceberg but it’s a start.
I’m now kind of addicted to this decluttering thing and have high hopes for the state of my storage areas by the end of this year.
Would you like to join me this month? I’d love to have company on this journey to household organization.
Here’s how the decluttering challenge works:
Each day you get rid of the number of items corresponding to that day. For instance, today is February 2 (yeah, we’re starting a day late) so you get rid of two items. If you’d like to catch up, make it three. Tomorrow is the 3rd so get rid of 3 items. If you follow this exactly, every day, by the end of this month you will have released 435 items from your home.
If you decide to join me I’d love to see or hear about what you are decluttering. That was the part that was fun in the Facebook group. We posted photos and/or shared lists of items we got rid of. I don’t want to set up a separate Facebook group for this, at least not at this point, so here are a few ways you can participate:
- Post pictures on Instagram with the hashtag – #LWDdeclutterchallenge.
- Post on the Life With Dee Facebook page. Again, use the same hashtag – #LWDdeclutterchallenge.
- Comment here on the blog. You can come back to this post to do so or on any post during the month of February. I respond to all comments here on the blog so you can be sure I’ll see it.
- Email me at firstname.lastname@example.org and put LWDdeclutterchallenge in the subject line.
This is a fun and fairly painless way to declutter. I recommend that you get a large box or plastic lidded container and designate it for this project. Decide ahead of time where you will take your discarded items which aren’t trash. As I mentioned, I took mine to a Re-Use Center. The one we have takes anything usable and then gives it away free. I love this idea! But there are lots of other options, depending on what’s available in your community. The important thing is to get the items out of your house as soon as possible. If you live near a drop-off location or pass by one regularly, it’s not a bad idea to get rid of the things you declutter the same or next day. You don’t want to get second thoughts and start rummaging around in your giveaway box!
Now, this isn’t the only, or even the best way to declutter. This is just one way. Here are some others:
31 Days to Get Organized With Peter Walsh
Declutter Your Home in 30 Days
The 6 Week Decluttering Challenge
Challenge: Declutter Your World in 10 Days
Or just make up your own rules. Maybe you commit to getting rid of at least one item a day, and more on the days you have time or are especially inspired. Even one item a day means you’ll have gotten rid of 29 items by the end of the month.
The important thing is to pick a method that you will stick with.
So, are you in? If so, leave me a comment. If you plan to share on Instagram I’d appreciate a link in the comments. I’ll search the hashtag periodically but if you leave me a link I’ll go follow you right away. And if you aren’t already following me, here is the link to my Instagram profile:
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Oh, one more thing. If you participate in one of the ways listed above, your name will go into a drawing for a copy of the popular book, “The Life-Changing Magic of Tidying Up” by Marie Kondo.
I have a copy in perfect condition which I’ve already read. In the spirit of decluttering, it’s time for me to release it and let someone else enjoy it.
*Note: Book giveaway is over.
I will join you. Most of my current problem is paper related but it’s not all paper as I know too well…So yes, please. Now let me go find my three items for today…
Deanna Piercy says
Paper. I don’t even want to talk about it. Weren’t computers supposed to create a paperless society? Ha!
I’ve been on a decluttering kick for almost a year, lol. I might be slow, but at least I’m steady! Next spot I’m working on are the bathroom vanity cabinets. Then my biggest project – and one I will need hubby’s help with – is decluttering the storage area of our basement. Our son, who is graduating university in May, announced to us the other day that he will probably be moving back home in August when his lease is up. We will need room in our basement to store some of his furniture and photography equipment.
Just out of curiosity, what did you clean out of your linen closet that you threw away? If old towels, animal shelters will take those. If old sheets, you can use those for drop cloths when you paint. Just some ideas. 🙂
Deanna Piercy says
I suspect I could spend TWO years decluttering. Ha! As for the linen closet, the things I threw away were old toiletries, mostly. I haven’t sorted linens yet but our local shelter does often ask for these, as you mention. I’ll be sure to take mine there. Thanks for mentioning it. I really do try to find a place to donate rather than throw away.
I’m not joining in, since we did a lot of decluttering when we moved here last year, and we only recently sorted out the paperwork that needed to be sorted. I do have plans for organizing things in the next couple of months though, and a couple of things still hanging around that we need to get rid of (things like the microwave that broke after we moved here, which is still in the living room… Don’t ask). Most of it can’t happen until we can sort out shelves to unpack the rest of the boxes though (our shelves for movies and books weren’t in good shape, so we didn’t bring them when we moved here, and haven’t gotten around to getting new ones).
We’re going to tackle stuff room by room. We’re starting with the computer room, because we need to re-arrange the computer room. When we moved here we just put stuff in any way it worked. But where hubby’s computer is is causing problems for him with light on the monitor from the window, and where mine is I can’t feel the breeze from the ocean when it’s nice enough weather to have the window open. So we’re switching things around. Hubby’s computer will move over to where mine is, where the light won’t catch his screen, and mine will move to where his is, where the window will be right next to me (since light on the screen isn’t a problem for me, of course). Also, we both need new computer chairs… Mine is already on the way. We could do with some shelves in here too, but we need the chairs more.
After we’ve done that, we’ll start on the other rooms. In a way, we should do the living room first, since it’s the one that has stuff in there that shouldn’t even really still be in the house (the bedroom just needs bookshelves so the boxes of books piled up in it can be unpacked, and the kitchen is fine; the kitchen’s too small not to keep it organized). But we need to move the computers so hubby can be able to use his more easily, which is why we’re starting in here instead.
Deanna Piercy says
It sounds like you are much further along than I am. I fear that we have become way too complacent about decluttering after 18 years in one place. Ha!
I’m pretty sure the only reason we’re further along than you is because we ended up moving twice in five years, and cleared some clutter both times. We were especially good about clearing clutter this last time, since the three flights of stairs (and no elevator) in the new building made us want to limit the number of boxes we had to carry up to the new place, LOL!
Deanna Piercy says
Three flights! Oh, my. Yes, that would be an incentive, alright.