The De-Cluttering project.

I consider myself to be a relatively organized and tidy person. I can’t focus when everything around me is in disarray, so I like to keep things spick and span. However, it’s a well-known truth that when you linger in one place for a while, you accumulate a lot of stuff and clutter. This includes physical clutter, emotional clutter and even electronic clutter.



I came across this fantastic article during the week, about simplifying your life, which really struck a chord with me. Over the past few months, I’ve found myself feeling overwhelmed with my routine, and by the sheer amount of tasks I feel I need to complete each day. I also get frustrated by the amount of crap lying around my house, and the way that I get buried in an avalanche of miscellania every time I open a cupboard. I’m planning on moving house at the end of the year, and the thought of packing all my stuff up and moving it is enough to make me want to pass out. Perhaps a life-edit is just what I need?



I started going through the list of suggestions in this article, and thinking about all the ways that I can streamline my life. There are so many things that I could do more efficiently, so many ways to better manage my time. I want to be able to have enough time to do the things I need to do as well as the things I love. Additionally, I need to clear out the physical clutter in my life, to address my space issues. I figure that having a more organized living space will help to reduce my frustration and stress.



On November 1, I started my very own de-cluttering project. I’ve set myself a few major goals, and figured out a plan of attack to accomplish each one. Here’s what I’ve come up with so far:



Goal #1: Get rid of the physical clutter in my house.

Steps to accomplish this:


– Go through each room, one at a time. ‘Edit’ each room by looking critically at the things in that space, and deciding what can be thrown away/donated/ put in better places. Leave only those things which are functional or beautiful.



– Go through each of my drawers and cupboards. Pull everything out and clean the cupboard or drawer. Sort out the contents of the drawer, throwing away anything that is junk and putting aside things to be donated or sold. Carefully organize the things that I’m keeping.



– Set aside 15 minutes a day for cleaning out my clutter.



– List items on ebay or etsy to be sold. List at least one item per day.



– Clean out my wardrobe. This is a biggie. I need to seriously cull the amount of clothing I own, and carefully store those items that I decide to keep.



– Address my spending habits. I’m not a shop-a-holic, but I certainly have a tendency to splurge on items that I don’t really need. For the next few months, I’m going to be seriously cutting down on the amount of clothing, books and beauty products that I’m buying, to reduce the amount of stuff I have. I’m going to try to only buy things that I need, or replacing things that are broken or worn out.



– Regularly make trips to the op-shop to donate items, rather than just putting aside the items to be donated and then forgetting about them.



Goal #2: Simplify my daily routine.

Steps to accomplish this:


– Set 3 major goals for each day and work on achieving these before I do anything else.



– Plan my meals for the week and do one big grocery shop for all the things I need (rather than doing many little shops throughout the week).



– Set aside a chunk of time each day for replying to emails and blog comments.



– Set a bedtime for myself and stick to it. I’m a shocker for going to bed late, and then acting cranky when I’m sleepy the next day. I need to be stricter about my bedtime.



Goal #3: Clear out my electronic clutter.



Steps to accomplish this:


– Clean out my desktop computer, deleting old and unused files and programs.



– Clean out my laptop, deleting old and unused files and programs.



– Clean out my email folders.



– Clear out my blog reader. I follow so many blogs and I need to reduce the number that I’m reading. I’ll be getting rid of all the blogs that post infrequently (less than once every two weeks), blogs that have turned snarky and bitchy and any blog that has lost my interest. There are so many blogs that I used to love, but now I find myself skimming every post rather than hanging on each word. Those ones need to go.



– Tidying up my blog layout and content.



Goal #4: Reduce baggage.

– Give my handbag a serious clean-out. Vow to only carry the essentials every time I leave the house.



– Limit the amount of luggage I take when I travel. I’m tired of lugging my gigantic suitcase about each time I take a trip. Last weekend, I travelled home for three days, and I challenged myself to take only my handbag and a backpack. It was tricky, but I managed. It was so much easier than carrying about a hulking suitcase full of crap I’m not even likely to use.



I’ll keep you all up to date on my progress. Do you have any tips for de-cluttering or simplifying your life? Are any of you interested in joining in the De-clutter Project with me?

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