Minimalism

40+ Practical Tips To Declutter Your Home (Plus a Free Workbook!)

Is clutter taking over your life? You need these practical tips to declutter your home and keep it organized for good! Plus, you get a free 12-page decluttering workbook!

I’ve always been the kind of person who gets slightly antsy at the sight of clutter. Some people find they’re more creative in a disorganized environment, but I notice that clutter increases my stress levels and makes me less productive. For a lot of us, a cluttered home causes discontent and even agitation because things get lost more easily, and it begins to feel like your possessions own you, rather than the other way round.

Is clutter taking over your life? You need these practical tips to declutter your home and keep it organized for good! Plus, you get a free 12-page decluttering workbook to guide you through the process!But even for those of us who know we need to declutter, sometimes we can’t bear to face the stuff we’ve accumulated because of the time it’ll take to go through it all. After all, choosing what to keep and what to toss is a daunting process. We all have things we hold on to that we don’t exactly need, either because it was a gift, it holds sentimental value, or it was just downright expensive and giving it away would feel like a waste.

I’m here to tell you that the decluttering process doesn’t need to be so complicated.

Everyone has their own strategies for decluttering, the most popular being those outlined in Marie Kondo’s The Life-Changing Magic of Tidying Up, but today I’m sharing my own practical tips for tackling the tough decisions and simplifying the whole decluttering process.

By the way, there’s a free 12-page eBook to guide you through this process (you’re welcome), so make sure you grab a copy of that before you leave. Okay, let’s do this!

How To Declutter Your Entire Home

Is clutter taking over your life? You need these practical tips to declutter your home and keep it organized for good! Plus, you get a free 12-page decluttering workbook to guide you through the process!Before you start decluttering, you want to ask yourself what your end goal is. Are you doing this because clutter is stressing you out? Are you hoping this will make you a more organized person? If you have a solid reason for wanting to declutter, it’s going to make it a whole lot easier to keep going.

Real talk: Some people use decluttering as a way to deal with deeper emotional problems because they think getting rid of things will simultaneously get rid of their problems. My advice is to not take this process so seriously that you think it will solve all of your woes. Also don’t go into it thinking, ‘I’m going to declutter so that I can buy more stuff later.’ That’s not what we’re doing here, yo.

3 Questions To Ask When Decluttering

You want to set some ground rules (boring, I know) to make sure you’re not keeping things you don’t really need. Marie Kondo’s guideline for decluttering is asking, Does this bring me joy? Some people have a hard time rationalizing this since, for example, toilet cleaner is not exactly going to bring you joy, but you still need to keep it (please keep it).

Instead of asking if it brings you joy, I suggest asking the following questions:

1. Does it make my life simpler or more pleasant?
2. Do I have more than one?
3. Is it easily replaceable and/or can I borrow it?

If it’s not making your life better in some way, it’s gotta go. If you have two black cardigans, choose which one you like better. If you don’t use your sleeping bag often and it’s easy enough to borrow one from a friend, get rid of it.

Now that you know the guidelines, you can start implementing them throughout the decluttering process!

The 5-Step Decluttering Process

Is clutter taking over your life? You need these practical tips to declutter your home and keep it organized for good! Plus, you get a free 12-page decluttering workbook to guide you through the process!There are five simple steps you can use to get your home feeling like a zen, clutter-free palace:

Step One: Choose An Area To Declutter

Make your way through the areas of your home listed below (and in the checklist that comes with the free workbook – keep reading to get your hands on that), one by one. The best way to get started is to gather everything from that room into a pile so you can see all of your stuff at once. Yes, I’m giving you permission to make a mess!

  1. Bedroom
  2. Office
  3. Bathroom
  4. Living Room
  5. Kitchen
  6. Misc.

P.S. If you have more rooms or areas than I’ve listed here, use the three guiding questions to get you through those areas.

Step Two: Ask Yourself The Three Questions

If it makes your life more simpler or pleasant, keep it. If you have more than one, choose which makes your life more simpler or pleasant. If it’s easily replaceable, get rid of it.

Step Three: Separate Into Piles

Once you’ve asked yourself the questions (and been totally honest with yourself), start sorting your things into piles:

  1. Toss
  2. Donate
  3. Keep (includes repairs)
Step Four: Put Everything In It’s Place

If you are keeping an item, choose where it’s home will be and make sure you put it back every time you use it. That’s basically the key to getting rid of clutter. And if you have something to repair, make plans to do so right away instead of leaving these items in a cluttered pile.

Step Five: Get Rid of Stuff ASAP

If you plan to donate or toss something, do so as soon as possible so you don’t have time to second guess your decision. Before you toss something, see if there are options to avoid dumping it in a landfill. Take broken electronics to a recycling facility, and search for thrift stores in your area that re-purpose damaged clothing.

What To Do If You Can’t Decide

If you’re having a hard time deciding whether to keep something or not, put it out of sight and set a notification on your calendar in three months’ time. If you haven’t needed it or you completely forgot about it, it’s time to get rid of it.

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40+ Tips For Decluttering Every Space In Your Home

Is clutter taking over your life? You need these practical tips to declutter your home and keep it organized for good! Plus, you get a free 12-page decluttering workbook to guide you through the process!Now that we’ve covered the three guiding questions and the five-step process, I’ve put together some practical tips for keeping each area of your home more organized. These are tips based on things that have worked for me or genius solutions I’ve seen from other people.

The Bedroom

Is clutter taking over your life? You need these practical tips to declutter your home and keep it organized for good! Plus, you get a free 12-page decluttering workbook to guide you through the process!Closet

  • Get rid of anything that still has a tag on it
  • When you take clothes out of your closet, put them back as soon as you decide not to wear them instead of leaving a pile on your bed
  • Follow the ‘goes with three other items’ rule

Drawers

  • Get drawer dividers to help keep your underwear and socks organized
  • Fold clothes and store them vertically instead of on top of each other

Bedside Table

  • Keep a tray or bowl on your bedside table to hold loose ends like chapstick and lotion
The Office

Is clutter taking over your life? You need these practical tips to declutter your home and keep it organized for good! Plus, you get a free 12-page decluttering workbook to guide you through the process!Desk

  • Get rid of pens as soon as they run out instead of putting them back into the pen pile
  • Keep cords and cables organized in a pouch or drawer
  • Use one notebook until it’s full before writing in a new one

Paperwork

  • Opt for paperless bills + receipts
  • Scan everything and recycle the originals
  • Keep one file folder for papers that need attention

Computer

The Bathroom

Is clutter taking over your life? You need these practical tips to declutter your home and keep it organized for good! Plus, you get a free 12-page decluttering workbook to guide you through the process!Beauty Products

  • Get a makeup organizer unit so you don’t have to rummage through a bag to find your mascara
  • Use something up before buying a new product
  • Try to stick to one of each type of product (one daily moisturizer, one eyeliner, etc)

Tools + Extras

  • Store your hair dryer and styling tools in a fabric bin or try this awesome Bamboo Organizer
  • Keep cotton balls and Q-Tips in mason jars for easy access

Cleaning Supplies

  • Use multi-tasking products like this Multi-Surface Cleaner for the kitchen + bathroom to reduce clutter under sinks
  • Dedicate a cupboard for all cleaning supplies instead of keeping them in different parts of your home
The Living Room

Is clutter taking over your life? You need these practical tips to declutter your home and keep it organized for good! Plus, you get a free 12-page decluttering workbook to guide you through the process!Books + DVDs

  • Get rid of anything you haven’t read or watched yet
  • If you wouldn’t read or watch it again, donate it
  • Make a habit of reserving books from the library or get a kindle for books

Coffee / Side Table

  • Consider getting a side table that doubles as a DVD holder
  • Leave a tray or bowl on top to collect random things like bobby pins that often end up in random places

Misc.

  • Add a wastebasket to the room if trash seems to accumulate (most people don’t have one in their living room)
  • Utilize a basket for storing miscellaneous items like blankets
  • Keep a tray near your entryway for holding keys to avoid misplacing them
The Kitchen

Is clutter taking over your life? You need these practical tips to declutter your home and keep it organized for good! Plus, you get a free 12-page decluttering workbook to guide you through the process!Pantry

  • Store grains, pasta, etc. in mason jars to eliminate bulky packaging
  • Dedicate separate shelves for breakfast foods (cereal, oatmeal), lunch and dinner options (pasta, legumes), baking goods (flour, sugar), and snacks

Cupboards

  • Store tupperware lids in a hanging pouch on a cupboard door like this
  • Store spices in a spice rack for added cupboard space

Fridge

  • Keep soon-to-expire food on the top shelf so you reach for those first
  • Take a fridge inventory before grocery shopping to avoid buying multiples
Misc.

Is clutter taking over your life? You need these practical tips to declutter your home and keep it organized for good! Plus, you get a free 12-page decluttering workbook to guide you through the process!Hobbies

  • Dedicate a room or space for hobbies or exercise, and keep related tools in their own drawer or cupboard in the same space

Junk Drawer

  • If you have no idea what a cord or button goes to, you might as well get rid of it
  • Don’t worry about organizing too much – everyone needs a junk drawer!

Sentimental Items

  • Scan photos to an online album or start working on that photo album you’ve been meaning to put together
  • Don’t feel too bad about getting rid of unwanted gifts. Let people know that you’d appreciate gift cards or a donation to charity in the future
  • Try to sell expensive items on Poshmark or OfferUp so you can at least make a little bit of money
How To Avoid Clutter Creep

Now that you’ve done all of this hard work and you’re feeling content with your home and everything in it, it’s important to avoid letting clutter creep back in.

All of the tips shared above are going to help with this, granted you continue to follow them, but one thing that can really help is implementing the one in, one out policy. If you find yourself wanting to buy something new, you have to donate something you already own.

This definitely makes it easier to resist impulse purchases because you have to pause and ask yourself if there’s anything you can get rid of to make room for it. Try it, and see what happens!

Free 12-Page Decluttering Workbook

Ready to get started on this whole decluttering thing? This workbook is going to make it even easier! I’ve outlined the step-by-step process for easy reference and included a checklist for you to print out and track your decluttering progress. Did I mention it’s free? Just enter in your deets below, and I’ll give it to you! BAM.

Get your free decluttering workbook!

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Ready to get started with decluttering? Enter your info to download the 12-page Decluttering Workbook!

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What are your best tips for decluttering? Share your wisdom in a comment below!

Catherine Beard
Hi, I'm Catherine! I'm the mindset coach and writer behind The Blissful Mind. Whether you're trying to reduce stress, slow down, or feel more content, I’m here to help make life a little calmer.

25 Comments

  1. This is amazing. I’m good about cleaning the closet and keeping the fridge up to date. But my desk and living spaces could definitely use some help. I’m so bad about sticking with an organized solution. Hopefully de-cluttering as much as possible will prompt me to clean things up a bit. Thanks so much for the workbook! I can’t wait to get started.

    xoxo
    Katie
    http://beyondtheclothing.com

    1. The fridge is one I definitely struggle with! I’m always forgetting about what I have in there. I was listening to a podcast where this woman said as soon as she gets home from the grocery store, she washes and cuts up all her veggies – that way she’s more likely to eat them and use them up. I think I definitely need to start doing that!

  2. Oh, genius! I was fighting with my tupperware lids just this morning, I shall have to create a storage bag for them!

    I love this post, but I have to disagree on one thing – even toilet cleaners can bring joy!

    I think sometimes people expect that they need delirious happiness with every item, but sometimes it’s simply a quiet, pleased satisfaction of something that does a job done well and in the easiest way possible. I try to ensure that even the most mundane objects in my home bring me joy – when the old cheese grater frustrated me I replaced it with a super sharp one that makes my grating tasks far more enjoyable.

    My vacuum currently does *not* bring me joy, it is old and has lost its suck. I plan to replace it with a vacuum that does spark joy to use it. And, can I tell you a secret? I have actually replaced our toilet cleaners because they didn’t spark joy, now I like what we have and I find cleaning the toilets a much more joyful experience.

    1. I was so glad I found that little trick – tupperware lids are the worst!

      I don’t personally have a problem with the ‘brings you joy’ thing, but I think asking if it makes your life more pleasant is a better way to think of it (which is what you were sort of saying anyway). I actually switched to a natural brand of toilet cleaner and that definitely makes my life more pleasant than one with heavy chemicals in it – I love that this turned into a conversation about toilet cleaner haha. Thanks for commenting, Eva!

  3. I love how you broke down the “does it bring me joy” question for practical items. I just read Marie Kondo’s book and learned a lot from it and am deep in the process of clearing house, but I knew that question wasn’t about to apply to my pots & pans…I just need to be able to cook! Great guide!

    1. It’s funny how everyone is reading it right now! I’m always surprised when people tell me they haven’t heard of her book. I feel like it’s taking over the world (or maybe I just follow too many people who are into minimalism haha). Glad you liked the advice, Stacy!

  4. Thank you so much for this! Such a helpful post! We’d started off well enough but then lost a little steam I think but we’re hoping to get going again in the New Year. Thank you so much for sharing, hugs xx

  5. I just have to say, I love your home! I follow quite a few minimalist blogs, but frankly i find some of their spaces a little too spartan and depressing. Your home hits just the right balance between being minimal and homey, and that’s no easy feat. Wonderful job!

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