(Remember: things often look worse before they look better. Don’t despair!)
- Start with one drawer (or box, or surface, or shelf, or closet, etc.)
- Take E V E R Y T H I N G out of the drawer. Everything!
- Clean out the drawer. Admire its emptiness. Close it.
- Sort the stuff that was in the drawer. Sort into 4 piles:
Throw away: Is it broken? Cheap? Silly? Unrecognizable? Recycle or toss it.
Give away: Have you used it in the last 6 months? Does it bother you? Do you care about it? Do you have more than one of it?
Put it where it belongs: Does it belong in another place? Put it there!
Keep: Does it belong in this drawer? Good.
- Return things to the drawer and put everything else away: into your give-away bin, trash/recycling bin, or other places in your space. It is not satisfying to minimize a spot and then see things all over your floor. It’s important to start AND finish.
Congratulations. You’ve minimized!
- Minimizing takes multiple passes. Reassess this drawer again in a month, and you’ll be surprised the stuff that sneaks in. Return to this drawer and all spaces multiple times.
- Letting go is hard. It’s hard to throw or give things away, especially things we spent money on or received as gifts. But if we don’t use or look at them often, they take up space and collect dust. If you feel unsure about letting go…
– Take a picture of it. You’ll always be able to look at the picture.
– Put it in a box. Put today’s date on the box, and don’t open it again for six months. If you don’t miss any of the things inside, it’s time to let them go.
- You don’t need things to remember. You don’t need that candle, or gourd purse, or valentine to remember prom, your trip to South America, or your first crush in kindergarten. You will remember! If there’s any doubt, take a picture and let it go.
Do you have other suggestions? I would love to hear them. Thanks for reading!