Having too much stuff cluttering up our space can often feel overwhelming and stressful. It is a constant reminder of the things we need to do in our home for it to be tidy. It can be useful to learn some practical decluttering hacks to embrace minimalist living!
Our home should be a relaxing sanctuary where we enjoy spending time. It should be the best place to unwind after a tough day.
So we should get rid of the excess to have space for more intentional things in our lives.
In this blog post, you’ll learn about 11 decluttering hacks for minimalist living! These decluttering hacks will help you have a clutter-free and minimal home.
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1 – Know your why and get inspired
To start on this journey, I think you should know why you want to declutter and what it will bring you.
This is one of the first decluttering hacks for minimalist living that you need to apply, before doing anything else.
Do you want to declutter to spend less time cleaning at home? Is it because you are tired of all the clutter around your home?
Or do you want to bless someone with your unused stuff? Maybe the reason is that you are moving house soon?
Knowing your why will tremendously help you be motivated and continue on your journey to minimalism.
Once you know why you want to declutter, try to regularly get inspired about minimalism and decluttering. You can watch Youtube videos or documentaries such as Minimalism from the Minimalists.
I love reading books as well. I loved Goodbye Things by Fumio Sasaki and the famous The Life-Changing Magic of Tidying Up by Marie Kondo.
These resources keep me inspired, and they have many great tips about how to get going on this minimalism journey.
2 – Schedule your decluttering
Most of us live busy lives which means that we often don’t take the time to properly declutter our spaces.
Sometimes, we think it is not our priority and that other things are more important. While this is true, we all must take time to tackle the clutter in our homes.
By getting rid of it, you’ll experience many benefits and you will see that it helps simplify our lives a lot.
However, to get to it, we often need to schedule when we are going to declutter, otherwise, we may never do it.
We will always have something more urgent or important to tackle. But if we want to live more minimalist lives, we need to make time for it and stop putting it off.
You don’t necessarily need to declutter your whole home in one setting. But for instance, try scheduling regular one-hour decluttering sessions.
This will help you make progress and not burn out at the same time. You can do this every week or every month, whatever works best for you. This will keep you motivated and not feel too overwhelmed.
3 – Start decluttering in the most used room
I think that the most motivating way to start decluttering is in the room you spend the most time in. It is where you will feel the biggest sense of accomplishment once you have finished going through it.
On the other hand, if you start with a room you rarely go in, you may not see the progress you’ve made. You might lose motivation and not continue decluttering which would be a shame.
Try to start with the most used room in the house, maybe it is your living room or your kitchen.
You will immediately see results and you will be more motivated to tackle other areas of your home.
4 – Gather everything from the same category in one spot
A tip that can highly help you declutter is that you should bring every item from a given category in one spot.
We often have different items from the same category stored in different rooms or closets in our homes.
However, to declutter, we need to see everything that we have to assess what we need and what we don’t need.
For instance, if you want to declutter your clothes, you need to gather all of them. Those stored in your walk-in closet, in your drawers, those in your guest room as well as those in your entry closet.
Wherever you may store them, bring them all in one place to see every piece that you own. It will help you make better decisions.
5 – Sort your things into “keep” and “get rid of” pile
Once you’ve gathered everything into one spot, it’s time for you to start assessing whether or not you want to keep these things. I suggest that you create a “keep” pile for the items you love and use.
For the things you know you want to declutter, you can categorize them into four different piles. Donate / sell / recycle / throw away.
That way, you will be able to directly organize them according to what you want to do with them.
If the item is still worth some money, why not try selling it? If you cannot be bothered selling it but it’s still in good condition, consider donating it. Someone else may get value from it.
However, if an item is not in good condition anymore, try recycling it if possible. Otherwise, you need to put it in the trash, but don’t hold on to it, it wouldn’t make any sense.
A final pile that may be useful to have is a “maybe” pile. Sometimes, you may not know whether or not you are ready to get rid of something just yet.
So putting it in a “maybe” pile will help you in the process. Once you’re done with your decluttering session, place the “maybe” pile in a closet.
After, for instance, 3 months, reassess whether or not you needed them during this timeframe. If you didn’t, donate or sell those items, because chances are you won’t use them later either.
6 – Ask yourself critical questions
When you find yourself hesitating and you don’t know if you should get rid of something, you can ask yourself some very useful questions.
Have I used this item in the past year? In the past season? Do I love it? Is it broken or in bad condition? Do I see myself using it in the coming year? Does this item support the lifestyle I’m trying to create for myself?
Try to be realistic and brutally honest with yourself, otherwise, you may end up with something that you’re not going to use for another year.
If you deep down know that you will not use it, chances are you probably will never use it again in the future.
It is not worth keeping things that you don’t use and that you don’t love, they won’t bring you any value nor happiness.
So, try to find a better home for these items, someone may love them and need them more than you do.
7 – Get rid of decluttered things ASAP
I think this is one of the most important decluttering hacks for minimalist living that you should apply.
Once you’ve decided you want to get rid of something, get the item out of your house as soon as possible. Take it to the donation center.
Of, course if you are selling something, you won’t be able to physically get it out of your home.
But, immediately take a picture, list it for sale online, and put the item out of your sight. Set a rule for yourself that if the item hasn’t sold in a month, it’s time for you to donate it.
This will help you get rid of the clutter and not hang on to something just because nobody wanted to buy it.
By getting decluttered items out of your home as soon as possible, you make sure that you won’t be second-guessing and reconsidering the item.
Otherwise, you may then decide to keep something you initially decided to get rid of, which is not what we want to achieve here.
8 – Set yourself decluttering challenges
If you want to declutter but don’t have a lot of time to do so, maybe try doing a timed decluttering challenge.
For instance, set your timer for 15 minutes or an hour and get a box. Then fill it as much as possible with things to declutter during this time frame.
If you have a bit more time, you can also highly benefit from a 30-day decluttering challenge. This challenge was imagined by the Minimalists, Joshua Fields Millburn, and Ryan Nicodemus.
You get rid of one item on day one, two on day two, and so on, until day 30 when you declutter 30 items.
In the end, you will have cleared out about 500 things from your home which is a huge accomplishment!
9 – Stop shopping
Minimalism is regularly seen as a great solution to people who want to stop their shopping addiction. They often feel they spend too much money on useless things.
I felt guilty for this one a few years ago. Before I discovered minimalism, every time there were major sales in stores, I used to go and buy new items of clothing. I did that even though I didn’t need those things.
As a result, I ended up with too many shoes and clothes. Then, I realized that I was buying the majority of those things because they were on sale and I didn’t need them.
If you recognize yourself here, try to cut the number of times you are out shopping for useless things, this will help your decluttering process down the line.
You probably already own everything you need. Of course, if you need to replace an item, don’t take this point into account.
But, by learning how to stop impulse buying and to shop intentionally, you will reduce the number of things entering your house and you will save a lot of money.
The other decluttering hacks don’t make any sense if you’re constantly buying new things at the same time. You will only keep accumulating things.
10 – The hanger trick
This tip applies to your closet. Every time you wear an item of clothing, you turn the corresponding hanger the other way around.
This way, after 6 months, you will know which clothes you wear and which you don’t. If you haven’t worn an item of clothing for 6 months, I don’t think it is worth keeping it.
Declutter all the clothes that you don’t wear. You’ll have a lot more space in your closet and you will spend less time in the morning thinking about what to wear.
Also, try to think about why you haven’t worn them. Maybe you don’t like their color? Or they don’t fit your body well? Are they uncomfortable or itchy?
Knowing why you aren’t wearing a certain item will help you not to make the same shopping mistakes in the future.
11 – One in, one out rule
Once you’ve decluttered your home, you don’t want that clutter building up again.
A great thing to do is to declutter an item every time you bring a new one into your house.
I’ve already written about this tip in a previous blog post, but I’m including it again here because I find it to be crucial.
I think this is one of the best decluttering hacks to help you maintain your space clutter-free in the long run. Which is probably what you want if you strive to live more minimally.
I hope you find these 11 decluttering hacks for minimalist living helpful!
They have helped me declutter almost every area of my life at this point.
Every person who wants to declutter can highly benefit from them. Whether you’ve just started your minimalism journey or you are well-advanced and want to maintain a clutter-free home.
What are your favorite decluttering hacks for minimalist living?