How to de-clutter when it is so overwhelming? (10 pts)?

I have lived in the same rental place for over 10 years and I have accumulated so much stuff that it is just way too out of hand and looks awful. It’s embarrassing. I have problems with letting things go too, I get very sentimental. Does anyone have any good tips for de-cluttering, when it is completely overwhelming (way too much stuff)? Does it even help to do ONE box, ONE drawer at a time? Because that doesn’t seem to make a difference in how this place looks.

I don’t have money to hire anyone. Plus I want to do it myself… have control over what stays and what goes.

Any tips, ideas, suggestions… and especially personal experience, would be greatly appreciated. 10 pts will be awarded to most helpful answer. Thank you!

You want to empty one room. Completely totally empty it. Start with the kitchen. Do not make decisions do not sit there and think about it. Put it in a box and move it out of the room. All of it down to the salt an pepper shakers. All the contents of the cabinets and the fridge too.

Scrub the kitchen all the surfaces inside the cabinets and fridge and floor too. Empty and wash the drawers. Take a hard look at the empty clean kitchen and decide where the best place is for you dishes, pots, silver, glassware. Think of ease of accessibility and putting them away. Put sticky notes on the cabinets and drawers saying where each will go.

Then put good non expired food back in the fridge…read the labels. Refill the pantry tossing out anything you have had sitting for more then 1 year. Make sure the dishes and pots and pans are washed and put them away. Do not let anything back that is chipped broken or mismatched unless it is your one special coffee cup. Get rid of duplicates. Nothing is allowed on the counter unless you use it every single day. Limit yourself to 1 decorative or useful item every 2 feet unless it’s a tree mug or canister set. The things that you use occasionally such as a platter gets stored out of the way. Spices that you haven’t used in the last year get thrown out. Treat yourself to matching potholders and towels if you don’t have.

Anything that you have not used in the past 5 years gets donated, ebayed, sent to a consignment shop unless it has a huge sentimental value like 10 on the richter scale of value. Leave it out of the room.

There is no kitchen that can not be emptied cleaned and resorted in 1 weekend. None. If it’s taking longer your obsessing about everything you remove from the room emptying is not looking, sorting or cleaning time it’s just moving it time. It’s where the hoarding shows have it all wrong. Get boxes and bags for trash and try to keep like things together especialy the cold food as you need to address that quickly it’s the last out and the first back in.

By choosing what you need in the room you will find many things that serve no function or duplicate functions. These are unnecessary. No one needs 3 rolling pins or 2 drawers full of supermarket bags. Pack it up and give it away or throw it out. There is a young couple looking to start out that will be grateful.

When I first moved in with my husband I opened under the sink to look for the cleaning supplies and found it stuffed to the gills with supermarket bags. In the cabinet was stuffed with ghetto and mismatched plastic containers that too got tossed. As I put them in a big bag to throw them out he freaked. It was a lifetime supply of bags and we get more each week at the market. Be ruthless. Be smart. Get it out of there.

Once you get done with the kitchen, celebrate. But plan the next room for the next weekend.

Keep yourself cool headed. I am going to school full-time taking 24+ credits a year, working 60 hrs a week and taking care of my home life which consists of a child and husband. I don’t think there really is a way not to get overwhelmed, it can all be very stressful. The best thing I have found is just to take it all one step at a time. While you are at work only worry about work. While at school only concentrate on school. home on the other hand just try to find an even balance. Take some kind of yoga or exercise program, also try some herbal tea it seems to help.

Buy garbage bags. Fill one a day. Weekly, take bags to trash and/or Salvation Army. Continue until satisfied.

if I have not worn it, used it or needed it in the past year then obviously I dont’ really need it so out it goes….there are a few things that rule won’t apply to like photos or maybe jewelry because you don’t wear that as much

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