Alot can build up in a home over the years. Mountains of clothes, overflowing drawers and hidden corners in closets that you no longer even know exactly what is hidden there. With so much clutter, it’s not easy to face a major cleanup. After all, who wants to spend all of their free time with stuffed, dusty shelves?
Fortunately, there are a few very simple tricks that you can use to tackle the big project of “minimalism” more easily. Bit by bit and not in a single quick action, you can get rid of superfluous ballast with the tips in this post without having to spend a lot of time. This will help you find the way to a tidier, minimalist home, more freedom for creativity and a more conscious life.
1. Make your own goal clear
If you plan to really clean up, you will most likely struggle with motivation at some point. Clearing out, rearranging, sorting out and throwing away can be quite exhausting. It helps to have a goal in mind! That could be the prospect of faster cleaning or saved money that might be used to finance your next vacation, or just more space in your home. A little more minimalism has many advantages ! It can also help to get rid of the illusion that one cannot part with things. What of all of this would you REALLY miss? Once you’ve tried to get by with fewer things, you quickly realize how little you actually need to live.
2. Start small
The worst thing that can happen to you with minimalism is that you stop before you even start. Perhaps because to you, mucking out appears to be too big and insurmountable a mountain. Instead, doing very small sections to start with can help. Just a few minutes a day, or just one drawer to start with. Every beginning is a good start, and small successes are just as motivating!
3. Start with simple things
The order of the areas that you want to clean out can also be decisive for success. Anyone who dares to get hold of the treasured memorabilia first will likely quickly be attacked by strong separation fears and lose heart again. It’s best to make the entry as pleasant as possible . Unemotional areas such as the overflowing cutlery drawer are a good start.
Tip: If you don’t want to split up straight away, you can just re-sort them first: frequently used parts in one drawer and less used parts in another. You will soon notice that you can actually do without the second drawer!
4. The way is the goal
No matter how you go about it, you will likely reach uncomfortable transitional stages from time to time. For example, when mucking out the closet in six steps, whole mountains of unsorted clothes are lying around. It doesn’t have to go straight away – after all, it took years to collect all this stuff. Then you probably won’t get rid of it in no time.
5. Questions to help clear out
You have just tackled the first area and you are faced with difficult decisions. What can go and what can stay? These questions can help you make a decision:
- Does this item make me happy?
- Is it useful to me? (Not just in general, but useful especially for me !)
- If it were lost, would I buy it again?
- Am I just keeping it because it was expensive?
- Am I only keeping it because it was a gift? ( There are also a few special tips for getting rid of unloved gifts .)
- How many times have I used this item in the past year? ( There is a very simple trick to using this question to keep your wardrobe tidy, for example .)
6. Borrow, exchange, repair
You can better decide what is useful for you if you realize that you don’t actually have to own all the things that you use. With the stickers from Pumpipumpe you can, for example, network with your neighbors and exchange things with each other . True to the motto: Buying is out – lending, giving and swapping are in !
7. Life out of the suitcase
If all the piece-by-piece approach and building big mountains of things that need to be sorted out has not yet been helpful for you, you can simply proceed as follows:
- Imagine you are going on a journey.
- Pack a suitcase (or two) and put everything in it that you need to live.
- Try to get along with it for the next two weeks.
So you consciously decide for things and not against them. This has the great advantage that mucking out is associated with many more positive feelings. And at the same time, you may find that you ultimately need a lot less than you thought.
Tip: The “basket method” works in a similar way, in which you walk through the apartment with a large basket, as if you were shopping, and pack whatever you like. What would you take with you? What would stay there until the very end (and can probably give way completely)?
8. Help with letting go
Is it particularly difficult for you to let go? If you can’t get rid of some things, but you still don’t have a use for them, you might want to put them in a box in the attic first. After a few months, the decision to stay or go will probably be a lot easier for you.
It can also help to photograph the objects . So you have the security of being able to look at them again and again when you feel like it.
Note: A lot of junk can also accumulate digitally. From time to time it is worth clearing out a little in this area too. Because memory cards full to the brim, 20 different newsletters and 500 Facebook friends, of whom you don’t even know the real name, probably nobody needs!
9. Get help
Imagine mucking out a friend’s home: Wouldn’t the decisions of what to stay and what can be removed be a lot easier because they could be made rationally rather than emotionally? A little emotional distance from the things that should be sorted out can work wonders and make some decisions easier. Just get help from outside! Another person is sure to assess your property very differently.
10. Minimalism game
The “Minimalism” project can also be approached in a playful way: For a month, for example, plan to sort out a part more every day than yesterday . That is, one item on the first day (even if it’s just a bent paper clip), two on the second, and so on. After 30 days you have already sorted out 465 things. Great!
11. Donate and sell, …
An important point in clearing out actions is of course: what to do with the sorted out stuff? Many things that are unusable for you can still be of real use to someone else. So don’t throw everything away, but look for local projects and organizations, for example, to which you can donate your things . Or sell things that you think are still valuable, for example through eBay classifieds . A box labeled “Sell” can be useful for this, from which all things that have not been sold after a few weeks are put into the box labeled “Donation” and from there to non-profit organizations or other points of contact for donations in kind.