Find out what stops so many of us struggling to have a clearout of our homes, rather than decluttering to earn a bit of cash and win our square footage back.
Statistics released in 2022 uncovered the fact that over 36% of us do not have a clearout until we have negative feelings about the clutter in our homes. The same set of findings also revealed that over half of people in the UK have a room that is so cluttered it is unusable. So not only are we avoiding dealing with the clutter, but we’re allowing it to have a negative impact on how we live. Studies also show that clutter is bad for our mental and physical health, so there really is nothing to be gained from having a lot of stuff that we don’t need.
So why are we all avoiding having those all important clear outs? Why do we reduce our living space, and put our health at risk, just to avoid decluttering?
The fact is that everyone has different reasons as to what stops them getting the job done. The good news is that there is a solution for every reason you might feel unable to get your decluttering done.
To help you, let’s take a look at some of the most common reasons decluttering is avoided and how to solve that problem:
You Find It Overwhelming
If you find the idea of decluttering overwhelming try to commit to more bitesize sessions we mention below. Alternatively try getting friends or family members to help, or distract yourself with podcasts or TV shows you can have on in the background. It may never be a fun task for you, but if you can do things to make it bearable you can still get it done eventually.
You Keep Items Just In Case
Are you always keeping hold of your clutter just in case something comes in handy? You worry that you will get rid of an item and then you will need it down the road, regretting your choice of getting rid of it in the first place.
The best way to overcome this is to face your fears. Sometimes when we do this, we acknowledge that if we did need the item down the line that it would not be difficult or expensive to replace. The Minimalists recommend a method called 20/20 for this, which is where if you can replace something for less than $20 dollars in less than 20 minutes you don’t need to worry too much about getting rid of it. If you’re still unsure, try putting this item along with others you struggle to get rid of into a box and if you don’t get them out to use them in 60/90 days you can justify getting rid of them.
You Haven’t Found Your Decluttering ‘Style’ Yet
Sometimes people can struggle to declutter because they think there is only one way to do it. There are in fact, endless methods for you to try so that you can find a way to declutter that works for you. Marie Kondo, Swedish death cleaning, fill one box, the decluttering one month challenge by The Minimalists – why not try a new method and see if it helps you get the job done easier than another method?
You Are Keeping Things With ‘Hope’
Do you have an entire wardrobe of items you have kept because you think you’ll someday fit into them? Do you have a whole room of hobby items like accessories, supplies and books because you hope someday you will use them to learn a new skill?
This kind of clutter is common, and full of good intentions, but it is only using up space you could otherwise use to enjoy your life as it is right now. With your clothes, if you have not worn them in six months it is time to get rid. If you are unsure, put everything in the wardrobe on a hanger facing one way and when it gets worn and put back, turn the hanger to the other side. In six months the items still in the original hanger position can be given away or sold.
With your ‘someday’ hobby items, perhaps choose one that you’ll commit to actually starting soon, and sell the rest so somebody else can start a hobby at a bargain price.
You Don’t Have Time To Do It
This is such a common reason that people struggle to declutter with a clearout. One of the easiest ways to solve this issue is to bag everything up that you know needs sorting out, and then place those items into your affordable self storage unit to be sorted out at a later date. This removes the items from your home, and the affordable self storage keeps everything safe until you do have time to sort everything out.
Alternatively try the one box at a time rule where you only have to fill one box at a time and then sell the items or give them to charity. Other people will have a rule of choosing 10 items every decluttering session. By splitting your sessions into bite size amounts you will feel less overwhelmed by the task in hand.
You Feel Like You’re Always Adding To It
Do you declutter regularly but you find that you are still drowning under a sea of ‘stuff’. You cleared out your bargain self storage but it is full again. You sold off half your wardrobe and yet somehow it is full of clothes again. If this is you, you have an issue with consumption, not necessarily clutter. Put simply, you are buying too much. Try watching The Minimalists documentary to inspire a lifestyle where you buy less. You may also find Marie Kondo’s series on Netflix handy as it focuses on the functionality of the home in relation to decluttering, which can be helpful if you find you have areas that seem to always be messy even with your best intentions.
There Is A Way For You To Declutter
Whether you lean on affordable self storage, learn to buy less, or distract yourself during your decluttering session, there is a way for you to get your house cleared out and cleared up.
It’s worth trying to find a way to do it, because in return you get a healthier, happier home with more space and a much better aesthetic, helping you get the most from your rent or mortgage everyday.