Happy New Year! Let’s start the year off by eliminating clutter throughout your home. Where are your home’s clutter “hot spots”? The table by the door? Your bathroom counter? Your desk? All of the above? Make note of the spaces you want to declutter, and set deadlines for getting organized. Make boxes for keeping, donating, and storing – these will come in handy.

  1. Pick up things that don’t have a place, and find a place for them. These are things that you use daily but don’t have a home. One of the biggest rules of an organized home: Everything should have a place.
  2. Clear a shelf, any shelf. Keep five of your most display-worthy items, and donate the rest, or at least set them aside for storage (but keep in mind that you’re aiming to simplify, not end up purchasing a storage unit).
  3.  Take everything out of all of your dresser drawers. If you haven’t used it, read it, or worn it in a year, donate it. If it doesn’t belong in the bedroom, put it in an “elsewhere” bin (and put the collected items in their rightful places when you’re finished).
  4.  In the kitchen, tackle the Tupperware cabinet. This technique is simple. Throw away every container that doesn’t have a matching lid, and every lid that doesn’t have a matching container. Abandon your useless appliances. If it doesn’t work or if you haven’t used it in over a year, throw it away or donate it. The same goes for pots and pans – keep the ones you use daily, but you don’t need eight sheet pans.
  5.  In the office, start with all those papers you have stacked up. You’ll need a system, like a simple “to file,” “to do,” and “toss bin.” Then, file your records in a way that makes sense for you. Be wary when throwing away sensitive personal information and important records. If you need a cut-off date for keeping semi-important documents, a good rule of thumb is seven years (the length of time lawyers are legally required to keep their own records).
  6. declutter all of your bathrooms at once, so you can take an accurate inventory of all of those long-lost soaps and lotions you forgot existed. Empty and wipe down all of your drawers, shower caddy’s, cabinets, etc. Throw away what’s expired, what’s nearly empty (that you don’t use). The same goes for medicine and makeup.
  7. Take a look at your living room décor. Is it cluttered and overcrowded? Too many pillows, coffee table books, or picture frames? Clear off surfaces, leaving only the décor items you’ve purposefully chosen. Store smart. There are many useful items that do belong in the living room; the trick is to find sophisticated storage options to keep them hidden but still handy.

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