The clutter has been creeping up on you until you’ve got not just one, but several ‘crap drawers’ or ‘cupboards of doom’ that you daren’t even open anymore. Every surface of the house is covered and you’re beginning to feel suffocated by the mess.
You decide that you need an almighty clear out. You’ve read Marie Kondo and watched her programmes on Netflix.
You’ve scrolled through Mrs Hinch’s feed and the #cleanspo hashtag on Instagram and feel inspired by photos of spotless houses.
But – when it comes to actually getting down to it and having a big declutter you don’t know where to start and so you keep on putting it off. And off. And off.
We get it. It’s an almighty task. Which is why we’ve put together some super motivating mantras to get you started and finally find that motivation to declutter.
Five minutes or less? The answer is yes
The hardest thing about embarking on an almighty clear out is knowing where to start.
Can you sort a small corner of clutter in five minutes or less? If so – do it.
That might mean grabbing a box and pulling out as many items as you can that are lying around that can either be binned or bagged (to go to charity). It might mean tackling one cupboard (or even one shelf of a cupboard).
Before you know it – you’ve started. Now you just need to keep going.
There’s no perfect time to start, so start NOW
You know you can put decluttering off. And off. And off a bit more. You tell yourself you’ll do it at the weekend. Or maybe the weekend after. But there’s no perfect time to start and you could end up putting it off forever. Meanwhile more clutter piles up.
So stop waiting for the ideal moment to start. Grab a box or a bag, pick up an item and start now.
Today is the day I declutter
Once you’ve made the decision to start now say this mantra and use it to rouse you into action. Today’s the day. You’re on your way.
OHIO is my goal
As you work make this your mantra. OHIO stands for ‘Only Handle It Once’.
This helps you stay focused on the task in hand. Only ever handle every item you’re sorting once.
Don’t hum and haw and pop things in a ‘maybe’ pile. The things that end up in the maybe pile are at risk of being shoved back in cupboards, never to be seen again for years.
Deal with each item swiftly and either dump or keep.
Every item I let go of will make me feel a little lighter
A tidy house is a tidy mind. It’s a well worn cliche but it really is true.
When everything’s tidy and organised and you’ve reclaimed your living space you really do feel lighter.
And this lighter feeling begins right from the very first item you let go of. Immediately you’re on your way to less mess, less stress.
Science backs this up. A study looking into the psychology of clutter found that women, in particular, reported feeling more stress when they lived in a cluttered house.
Mrs Hinch has spoken out about turning to tidying to beat anxiety and panic attacks. Lynsey Crombie, “the queen of clean”, says: “happiness is a freshly cleaned house”. They’re right.
What better inspiration do you need to start that big declutter, once and for all?
I am sure that less will be more
Remember how it feels when you stay in a holiday home or hotel room and only have the things you need around you. There is no clutter and more space to breathe. And it always feels so relaxing.
Once you declutter you’ll achieve the same effect. You’ll have less stuff and the things you keep will mean more.
Try not to hold onto things unless you love them, use them or need them. Everything else can go. Even if you loved it once.
You’ll end up only surrounded by the things you truly value or need. And that feels great.
Move fast, don’t overthink, let it go
A HUGE declutter can take a lot of time. One way to speed things up is to adopt this mantra.
Imagine there’s a sand timer ticking down. You have to move fast, don’t overthink and, if you don’t need it, use it or love it – let it go.
A summer to declutter
Set yourself a time limit to finish your big declutter.
Even if you tackle it one drawer and one corner at a time, if you know there’s a time limit you’re more likely to stick to your guns and finish the task in hand.
Whether you set yourself a goal of a tidy house by the end of the summer holidays or by the end of your two week break off work – be disciplined and stick to this timeframe.
I only have to do this once
If you do the big declutter right then you only have to do it once. After being ruthless and getting rid of anything in the house that you no longer use, need, want or love then you’re left with things to put away tidily – each in their designated space.
If you are diligent and devote a little time each day to make sure everything is put back where it belongs then you will always have a tidy house. Knowing that the huge effort it takes to declutter is something you’ll only have to do once can spur you into action.
Don’t put it down, put it away
To keep on top of the clutter after a big clear out make this your mantra.
Whenever you (or your husband or kids) use an item you must put it away. In its designated place.
Stick to this rule and you can live clutter free forever. Hooray.
Get it done, then have some fun
Decluttering is an almighty task. When you’ve put in all that hard work and effort reward yourself with a treat. It might be going out to eat ice-cream sundaes or booking a babysitter to grab a well-deserved pint at the pub.
If you can dangle your own carrot to encourage you to get to the end of your big declutter once and for all, it can motivate you to keep going until the job is finished. Then you can sit back and wallow in pride. You’ve earned it.
What’s even better is that you come back to a tidy and organised home that fills you with pride and a sense of calm.
When it comes to the big declutter the hardest thing is to get started.
Once you’re on a roll and you see what difference organising a cupboard, corner or a whole room can make – you’ll be inspired to keep on keeping on and do more.
It will make you feel awesome. So – what are you waiting for? Use our decluttering mantras to inspire you and start today.