Taking Control of Clutter

If you're living beneath an ever-growing avalanche of papers, clothing and household goods, you're not alone.  Clutter happens to the best of us, and clearing it can seem like an insurmountable task.  The good news is that you no longer need to be intimidated by the prospect of organizing your space.  By breaking the process down into smaller steps, you can be well on your way to controlling your clutter.

Bearing in mind that organizing your household will take hard work, set aside multiple blocks of time to tackle clutter without interruption.  It probably took years for the clutter to accumulate in your home, so it may take more than one day to get rid of it.  It's best to conquer a small area at a time, so choose which space you want to clear first.

Now you're ready to roll up your sleeves and begin!  There are two stages involved in household organization: sorting and storage.


Sometimes it seems as though beauty products multiply beneath the bathroom sink and canned goods reproduce in the pantry.  Go through all of your possessions and group similar items together.  You may find that you have duplicates of some items that were purchased when the original was hidden behind other clutter.  Keep the one in the best condition and purge the rest.

Throw away anything that is broken, is missing parts or has passed its expiration date.  Donate any items that don't fit or that you no longer use.  If you haven't used an item in a full year, chances are you won't be using it in the future, either, so why not pass it along to someone who will be able to get some use out of it? 

You should now be left with only the things that you use regularly, arranged with other similar items.  Shirts are now with shirts, books with other books, board games all together.  It's time to find a place for everything, and put everything in its place.


Keep your groups of like items stored in appropriately sized containers.  Don't keep small items like sewing supplies on a large closet shelf without boxing them first, as they tend to drift and get lost in larger spaces.  On the flipside, be sure that a storage solution is large enough for the entire group of items so that all of them can be kept in one central location.

Keep your things in a convenient spot based the type and frequency of their use.  Items that aren't used often can be kept in deeper storage (on higher shelves or perhaps in a basement) while your everyday things should be kept close at hand.  In the kitchen, try to store things in drawers that are close to where they will be used.

Now that you've tackled the clutter in your home, make a commitment to stay clutter-free.  You'll have more room to live in and the lack of clutter will help you feel less stressed.  Be sure that any item you remove from storage gets returned to its proper place, and you're bound to have a happier, cleaner, more clutter-free home.

Information is for educational and informational purposes only and is not be interpreted as financial or legal advice. This does not represent a recommendation to buy, sell, or hold any security. Please consult your financial advisor.