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15 Feb 2023

Five decluttering tips for a simpler life

Spring cleaning may get all the hype, but after a busy summer, autumn can be an ideal time to declutter and reset. And that’s just around the corner.  So, here are some expert tips to start fresh and create simple tidying routines for the rest of the year.

Think seasonally

We know that trips to the beach aren’t just for summer, but long days sun-tanning probably are. It’s time to say ‘goodbye for now’ to your summer clothing, shoes and swimming togs, make sure they’re clean and store them away until next October/November. It can be an opportunity to go through unworn clothing and shoes and get rid of those.

Plus, you’re not going to need the inflatable pool or outdoor furniture and décor for a few months, so why not save a bit of space by packing them away? Now you can throw away items that are worn out beyond repair: you may find new ones on special, once summer is well and truly over.

The same principle applies all year round: put away, donate or recycle what you don’t use in the season. Some experts suggest scheduling a seasonal declutter as a way to keep your home always clutter-free. 

Focus on one area at a time

There’s no need to do too much at once. In fact, if you do, it can be easy to get overwhelmed. The solution? Start small, choose one room and then one specific area: once that’s organised, move on to the next.

Also, autumn decluttering doesn’t need to happen in one day. There will likely be plenty of rainy days to go through your to-do list. The Your Home and Garden’s website has some great tips to determine your plan of attack and choose what stays.

Check for expiry dates

Kitchens are always brimming with activity and clutter. Foods, tins and cans tend to accumulate in the pantry and in the fridge, especially when entertaining people in summer. 

So, March can be a great month to take everything out of the cabinets and go through it. 

Throw away expired food, and you can donate what’s not yet expired but you probably won’t eat in the near future. Once you’ve made some room, you can rearrange what’s remaining by zones. Here are some handy tips to get you started.

Don’t miss the bathroom

Just like food, cleaning products, toiletries and make-up have expiry dates. For example, liquid make-up like mascara can only be used three to six months after opening. 

Kiwi Families recommends making a note of what you have and want or need to keep, and when the last time was that you used it. If it’s over a year, you probably won’t use it again. Also, don’t forget to check the expiry dates on medication, so you can quickly replace what you need, before you need it. 

Make decluttering a habit

A whole-house declutter sounds intense, and it is. That’s where practising decluttering and tidying routines can make a lot of difference.

This recent article in features 12 decluttering and cleaning resolutions, including:

  • Organising your clothes daily – experts suggest placing a bag for items to donate in the closet, to collect giveaways as you come across them.
  • Keeping one area clutter-free at all times.
  • Preparing morning tasks nightly.
  • Making your bed each morning.
  • Scheduling a recurring but limit amount of time for bigger chores, and more… 

At the end of the day, decluttering is a form of self-care and one of the key steps to leading a simpler, stress-free life.


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