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How to Finally Get Rid Of Your Clutter

Clutter causes frustration, overwhelm and impatience in your home, schedule and life.

You crave something different. You want calm, peace and a confident sense of control.

You see photos online of beautiful homes, free of excess clutter.  The counter tops and cupboards are clear and inviting.  Organized and delightfully perfect.

You see those cupboards and you know you want in on that.  It just looks so peaceful.

But how the heck will you ever get to that point?  There are so many routes you could take. You can read blogs, books or watch videos.  You can ask your friends for help or ask a professional for help.

Gee, come to think of it, there are lots of options out there!  As you research all of the options, you notice that some advice is contradicting other advice.  You realize how far you are from where you want to be.

You keep seeing the photos of the smiling perfect people and their perfect homes and lives.

You keep researching.

Uh oh, here comes those original feelings again.  Frustration, overwhelm and impatience.

What happens next?

The lap top and books close. The topic of conversation with your friends changes.

You don’t reach your desired outcome because it feels too hard, too out of reach.  You give up and feel some shame.

The truth is with clutter, starting is hardest part

You can dream of decluttering your life for years but never make any progress because fear holds you back.  You convince yourself that no matter what you do, it won’t be good enough.  The goal is to reach a magical finish line of “success”  in one giant leap,which is an excuse to never start at all.

So, what is the secret to starting?

It’s not research my friends, it’s doing.  Doing ANYTHING.

Take small, consistent action.  It can be an action so small you question its worth.  But guess what? Once you make the decision and take action, you have the ability to create your best life.

Name one achievement in your life that didn’t begin with a firm decision that yes you would achieve it and yes you would make it happen no matter how many small steps it took.

Take one small action today and you’re already miles ahead of most.  Because you’ll build momentum and confidence and gain steam in the right direction. You’re finally control!

It’s time you gave yourself a break and realized that starting your journey to a simple, clutter free life can be really tough at first.  We get so hung up on perfection that we forget how powerful we really are.

Think easy and start small

Below are three examples of starting small.  You could try these small actions or use them as inspiration and decide on one for yourself.

1- Donate an item from your wardrobe that you know deep down you don’t need to keep anymore.  Let it go, and take the time to be proud of yourself for taking action.

Clothing can be a great place to clear clutter consistently from your life.

Related: Simplify Your Wardrobe and Save 91 Hours a Year

2- Give your car or house keys a permanent home and commit to return them to this spot each and every time you are finished using them.  You’d be amazed at how powerful this one small change can be.

Years ago, I had to tear apart my house any time I needed to leave, because I could never find my keys.  They were always in a different pocket, bag or purse.  This one small change was a catalyst for me to designate more items to a proper place, and my daily life was so much easier because I wasn’t constantly searching for important items.

3- Clear off your bedside table and commit to keeping that tiny little area clutter free.  Why?  When you choose a small space that you can have complete control over clearing, you can really prove to yourself that yes, you can keep a space looking and feeling tidy.

Bonus points for this one because you see it before you go to bed.  This has the power to affect your energy positively before you sleep. 

“Motivation doesn’t cause action.  Action causes motivation.” -Neil Pasricha, The Happiness Equation


Your home will not go from cluttered to clear overnight, and that’s okay.

Our culture is obsessed with quick fixes and overnight success.  Yet small consistent actions are the most accessible and powerful way to change your life.

You want a clutter-free and organized life.  You can absolutely achieve this!  But it will take decisions, actions and habits that build over time.  Don’t let overwhelm and fear hold you back.

It’s normal if you don’t know where to start!  Your greatest clarity will come not from reading about clutter-clearing, but from taking action.

What’s a small win you could clear in your life today?  Let me know in the comments below!

Find out why your home is still cluttered.

Most people struggle with one of three common challenges when clearing clutter. But once you understand what’s holding you back, you can create a peaceful, calm & inspiring home you love.

Take the quiz below to uncover your #1 clutter challenge and how to overcome it!


This Post Has 8 Comments

  1. Glenda

    I’m really want to do more decluttering Jen and these are great tips for getting me started on it again. I’ve actually been doing example 1 recently, but with a slight twist. Rather than just picking out something from my wardrobe to donate, instead I’ve now got a rule that if it feels uncomfortable when I’m wearing it, it’s got to go. So you know how you try on clothes to decide what to wear and then put things back because they’re too tight or don’t sit well… those are the things that aren’t allowed back in the wardrobe and can get donated to charity. Or if I did end up wearing it but ended up feeling uncomfortable for most of the day, it gets washed and then donated.

    1. Jen Rao

      Glenda, this is such a great tip! Life is way too short to wear clothes that feel uncomfortable and/or don’t make you feel fabulous.

  2. Kasia

    This is such an important and needed post, Jen!
    Your ‘do anything’ is so true and powerful – I find it to be the hardest step with almost everything that’s even a bit challenging 😉 for this reason I love the three tips on how to easily start with a small step.
    I feel I’m pretty good at letting things go from my environment by donating or recycling, but one thing that tends to linger and accumulate is socks and underwear! I don’t know why but I’m quite reluctant to simply throw them away when they are past their best appearance, but at the same time I don’t feel like wearing discolored, or permanently stained pieces. I see your response to the previous post…so I guess I’ll just toss them 😉

  3. Vicki Helyar

    Did a very similar thing recently too, Glenda. Decided to take anything that I wanted to wear in spirit but just never did or felt right in it and donated it to the local charity shop. The same with make up – just got rid of or gave away what I did not use (like green eyeshadow – it just does not work on me!).
    Apart from the room you make for more important things and how much better your house looks and life feels when you declutter, I also think it’s a beneficial mindset to get in in regards to the environment and the unnecessary resources we accumulate.
    Love this website and your sentiment.

    1. Jen

      Hi Vicki, thanks for the comment! The green eye shadow is such a good example of a small thing taking up space in your life when you just won’t use it. We can go so long holding onto items like this until we put some effort into clearing them away.

  4. Sherry

    I am going to start with BOOKS…and take them to the half price book store. I have boxed up some excess books that really are just taking up space and will never get read by me or my husband. They might have been unique gifts at one time, but once they were looked at or read, they now just take up space. Like that once upon a time coffee table book or the retirement gift book of 1000 places to visit, that I am never going to get to.

    1. Jen

      This is a great place to start! Those books are meant to be enjoyed, and hopefully they will find new life once you let them go 🙂

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