How to make decluttering easier


I work with many people to help them declutter and most come with feelings of overwhelm even thinking about decluttering. The project seems too big, too hard and too daunting. Plus they have begun over and over again only to quit. They don’t trust themselves to begin again.

Here are a few ways to make decluttering easier:

  • If you can’t think of where to start, use something like my declutter calendar to kick start your progress.
  • When you get stuck, instead of beating yourself up, allow yourself to be stuck. Put the item aside to decide later or ask someone to help you decide.
  • Put on fun music to make it feel more like a party than a chore. Florence + The Machine has music with great beats.
  • Don’t try to get it all done in a day or a week or you will get burned out & quit.
  • Create a plan so it’s easier to start and stop decluttering. Don’t declutter haphazardly or you won’t see your progress.
  • Release the need to declutter perfectly or see it as all or nothing.
  • Go at your own pace based on the time restraints of your life. Even 5 minutes is going forward.
  • Declutter with a friend. Laughter is sure to happen.
  • Laugh at your patterns of keeping junk and happily release your stuff creating a new pattern.
  • See decluttering as a way to nurture yourself and your family, not another thing to do.
  • Declutter with a group for more fun and accountability. Get encouragement from others (we know the family usually doesn’t get excited that you’ve decluttered.) I am hosting an online declutter group that starts in January if you are interested.
  • Decluttering feels freeing so allow yourself to feel lighter as you are decluttering.


  • Meline says:

    Thanks, Beth, for this good advice, especially the points 4, 5, 6 & 7…that is so me! 🙂 It’s so much easier to declutter/clean out one cabinet or drawer at a time; not so overwhelming!

  • Patti says:

    I confess, I am a hoarder and I find I can clean one small area at a time. I had a huge stack of magazines that I had gone thru 3 times this past year and have them down to less than a dozen. And I had a big basket of container lids in my kitchen and finally cleaned it out. I had 4 cool whip containers and over 60 cool whip lids! I just try to do a small area every month and once I have cleaned an area it makes it much easier to declutter it again.

  • Beth Dargis says:

    Good for you, Patti!

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