3 ways to declutter your house

Have nothing in your house that you do not know to be useful, or believe to be beautiful. – William Morris

Last night I invited several friends over for a girls’ movie night. (We watched The Vow – so good!)

We had a great time laughing, crying, enjoying each other’s company. It was worth the clean-up that preceeded movie night.

Over the summer, with both girls home, our house had become a clutter magnet. It’s an understatement to say their bedrooms were messy, and their playroom was worse. The whole house needed a once-over. Movie night was a great motivator to get the place back in order.

Here are three tips that helped me put everything back in its place.

1. Set a deadline.

I procrastinated until I had a pressing reason to clean up. Invite people over. It’s a great way to get the dust bunnies out from under your feet.

2. Use the useful and/or beautiful plumb line.

Morris’ quote (above) was my mantra as I picked through the heaps of ‘stuff’ that we accumulated this summer. It was shocking to me how much we have in our house that is neither beautiful nor useful. Why keep thing that don’t have a purpose or bring joy?

3. Break the task into manageable steps.

I was tired after the kids went to bed on Wednesday evening. All I wanted to do was plop down on the couch and watch House Hunters. But I told myself I needed to tackle the playroom first. The playroom and nothing else. Giving myself permission to stop after one chore gave me the motivation I needed to get started. Thirty minutes later, the playroom was clean. And the best part was that I’d DVR’d House Hunters so I could watch it without commercials.

Let’s talk: What are your best strategies for decluttering?

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