By ERIN TURNER
We are nearing the end of January. How are all your New Years’ Resolutions going? Can you believe it’s only been a month since we all sat down and drew up promises of staying fit, eating well and being more organized? Seems a lot longer than just a month!
But that’s what’s great about New Years’ resolutions, you can just pick up anywhere. And February is a great month to jump on board and tackle those resolutions. Especially this year since it is a leap year and we get an extra day!
One of my perennial goals is to declutter and reorganize the house. I usually spend January and February doing this task. Since I had a child home with a broken leg the first three weeks of January, I didn’t get a whole lot done. So I’m looking to February as my go-to month for some serious decluttering. That means I’m simplifying and getting rid of items in our house that:
- are broken, unused or don’t serve a purpose
- I have duplicate items (how many potato peelers do I really need??)
- Items I just don’t love and are taking up space
Decluttering a whole house for many people is an overwhelming task. I find breaking it down into rooms or areas are the best. Stay in that room until it is completely done before moving on to the next.
In preparation for my yearly decluttering, I found this great tool to help define areas for decluttering. I printed it off and have it on the refrigerator. Every day I can look at it and pick an area to declutter. Using this method may be easier for you if decluttering one room at a time sounds like pure hell!
With this worksheet, you’ll tackle one decluttering job a day for a month. Some the tasks will take less time than others. So tailor it to your schedule. Save the longer tasks (e.g. decluttering closets/clothes) for a weekend or an evening when you don’t have anything going on. You don’t have to stay in order. You can bounce around the scheduled tasks as much as necessary. The important thing is to accomplish all the decluttering by 30 days.
You can also tailor it to your house. You may not have a garage but maybe you have an attic which needs attentions. Just feel free to adjust the areas to fit your household. Just be sure to do some decluttering every day.
I think you’ll be amazed at the end of the month how much you’ve accomplished with very little effort. Now, a note to the wise…don’t stalemate your wonderful efforts but taking the bags and boxes of “trash” and just storing them in the garage until later. You’ve defeated your whole purpose of decluttering. And let me tell you, if you have kids, they will innocently look in one of those bags and with a gasp exclaim, “You can’t possibly get rid of this! I NEED this!” And thus…it will find its way back in the house. Take those bags and boxes to a local charity or plan a garage sale early this spring. Just get them moving out of your space.
Decluttering is a task which can be hard but the reward of creating space, simplicity and peace in your household is priceless. I love my house after I declutter, I know where things are located, I have ample space to store the necessary items and life just seems to flow so much nicer when I’ve tackled the clutter monster. And like my oldest son says, “When mama is happy, then everyone is happy.”
Here’s to a happy February for all your Declutter-ers!
Erin Eisenman-Turner is proud to be a native Missoulian. Along with her husband and three sons, they raise chickens, pigs, rabbits, and vegetables at Turner Family Farms in the Orchard Homes area. When the farm chores are done, the coupons clipped, and the blog written, you can find Erin exploring Montana, collecting antiques, and trying to maintain a well-run, happy, and organized home for her family. Read more of Erin’s blogs about homesteading, farming, homemaking and other fun things at TurnerFarmLiving.com