3 Ways Decluttering Offers Clarity
Summer brings on new experiences and the chance to declutter. During the winter months, we tend to hunker down and almost hibernate. Summer, on the other hand, offers a time to explore, change things up, and live a little more freely.
With summer break in full swing, Emma left for a week long camp in Lake City, Michigan about 6 hours from where we live. I was feeling a little anxious about sending her. She’s been to camp before but never 6 hours away. This mama was definitely feeling out of her element, but I knew that she was in good hands and also knew that she needed to live and enjoy new experiences.
While Emma was off doing something new, I took the opportunity to clean and declutter her room. It’s so much easier to do while she’s not there. As with most teenagers, my definition and her definition of decluttering/cleaning is VERY different. Mine involves getting down to the nitty gritty. Wiping baseboards and walls, cleaning out drawers, pitching unwanted or needed items. A good deep clean. Her version. Picking a few things up off the floor, putting a few clothes away, and maybe wiping off her dresser top as quickly as possible so she can get to her social life. Hence, the life of a teenager.
Very different indeed.
I’m a huge fan of decluttering and reorganizing. I love the feeling of order with flexibility. Emma, not so much. She loves and prefers the living in the spur of the moment kind of lifestyle, which I love about her. When she was little, I nicknamed her “little tornado” because everywhere she went, she left a trail of something behind. It really is in her true nature to have some clutter.
So, in thinking about our differences, I realize that it’s important to honor our individual characteristics, but I also find it just as important to emphasis why decluttering is important to incorporate into our lives.
So, instead of giving you how to steps for decluttering, I thought it more beneficial to explain why I like to declutter in hopes that you can find the benefits of decluttering, too.
But first, there are different levels of decluttering.
There’s the surface decluttering and the nitty gritty, as I call it, decluttering, which is what I did to Emma’s room. And boy, did it feel good!
Surface decluttering is something that can be done daily. It’s simply straightening up your space. This could be going through the mail and ditching the junk mail and organizing the bills, putting away toys, unloading baskets of laundry, putting the dishes away, etc. It’s amazing how doing simple tasks like these can make you feel so much better.
Nitty gritty decluttering is when you dig deep and actually start throwing or giving away stuff you no longer have need for. This one can be tough because many times there’s sentimental value attached to these items. I like to do this kind of decluttering in stages. When I cleaned Emma’s room, I threw away what was clearly trash, but anything that was personal to her, I simply set aside and organized it for her to go through, and I respected her privacy. Big deal with teenagers.
Now, here’s why I like to declutter.
- Clearing clutter just flat out makes me feel good.
Having too much clutter is bad for your health. It discourages you from getting other things done and adds stress to your life making you feel overwhelmed. Looking around your home, you may see pile after pile of to-dos. That’s what clutter becomes, a laundry list of to-dos. I need to put that load of laundry away. I need to dust that bookcase. I need to go through that mail. (Ugh. I’m feeling stressed just writing this. Ha.)
Clutter weighs on you like a 100 pound weight sitting on your shoulders. And that’s not good. So clearing clutter, makes you feel lighter and lifts you up so that you can find the time to do what you really want to do. Tidying up every day is how I stay on top of my clutter.
- Clearing clutter helps calm my busy, and somewhat, chaotic life.
In a paperless society, it sure does seem like we still have a lot of paper around the house. And this paper can pile up super fast if we’re not on top of it. Taking a few quick minutes to organize this paper can relieve you hours of wondering where stuff is. I’m sure you’ve experienced that feeling where you can’t find something and just a minute ago is was right on the kitchen counter. When you take the time to organize and purge, life can feel a little less chaotic. It’s an awesome feeling knowing that you know where something is and that takes loads of pressure off your mind.
- Removing clutter offers me appreciation for what I have.
Holding on to stuff and wanting more stuff, can leave you feeling unworthy. We live in a society where “stuff” gives the perception of importance and accomplishment. I’ve fallen into this trap myself, and sometimes I get hung up on thinking we don’t have what everyone else has, so, therefore, we need it. These are not good thoughts and make you feel lousy about yourself.
So, every now and then it’s good to get rid of stuff so you come to appreciate what you do have. I know this can be hard to do. We become attached to our things. Donating to a local charity is a great way to help others. And for those things you’re attachment too, I find it easier to give those to someone you know will appreciate them the way you do. The more often you do this, you start to realize that you have plenty, and the desire to want more really does become less important.
One last thought about decluttering. It will save you money and time. Let’s face it, we will continue to buy things. That’s just reality. Decluttering helps stop you from overbuying. When you can see what you do have, you’re less likely to make random purchases and more likely to make smarter purchases.
I hope knowing why I choose to declutter helps you to understand the importance decluttering has on your health, your life and on your self-worth.
Decluttering gives you more time to live creatively, because who wants to be bogged down by a bunch of stuff? No one. Happy Decluttering!
Now it’s your turn: How do you declutter and why? And if you don’t declutter, did this inspire you to try and start?
Thank you for reading.
Photo By: Pixabay