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mental health

How to declutter your home and stay clutter free?

Sue Rae (aka Sorted by Sue) runs us through the basics of how to declutter your home, giving you a clean and clear space to work and live, easing your mind, improving mental health and allowing an easier life.

how do I declutter a room?

“I’m going to give you the example of the kitchen. The idea is to pull everything out and start from a clean slate. Wiped down the cabinets and have it feel like when you first moved in, with empty cabinets.

Then the idea is to categorise everything like with like.  Put all your plates in one section,  cups in one section, glassware in one section and once you’ve gone through that you can start the editing phase which is the really fun part. It’s a case of looking at your things and being like do I use it, do I love it or can I donate it. It might be that you have a family of four, but you have twenty eight mugs and out of those mugs you actually use eight or ten of them. You may never have twenty-eight people come over to your apartment.

So this editing phase is crucial and especially as you’ve pulled everything out it’s important that you go deep here and work out what really is helping you and supporting you.”

what should I buy to help me to declutter?

“Current misconception for a lot of people is that they have to have the right containers before they start. Do not go to any kind of container store, don’t hit up Ikea. One of the things I find is that people have an analysis paralysis, they feel they can’t start until the get the containers. Just start and buy the containers at the end when you know what you need to contain.

As you go through the decluttering process it’s  one item at a time. You pick an item up and you make the decision on it. Ask yourself, do I love it, do I use it, does add value to my life and if it does keep it.”

what’s next ?

“Part of this whole thing is about working out what your zones are. Your kitchen should just house your kitchen stuff. Your garage should have your tools, car and maybe a bike because that’s what the garage is there for. You want your home to be able to have the things that are going to make you feel good. You want to have a home for everything that you assign value to.  I think the hardest part is letting go of the fantasy self. This is when people are like ‘I’ve got my roller skates when I was 17 and I’m still moving them from apartment to apartment because my fantasy self thinks that I’m going rollerblading again.’ At my age I’m probably not doing it so why not let it go to a kid that’s going to be really interested in rollerblading and having fun with them.”

how do I maintain the declutter?

“I have a small donations box that just sits in the bottom of my closet. When I bring something new into my home it has to be better than something, I already have . We call this the one in one out rule. I think it’s really important to decide when you bring something in that it’s going to replace something because this is the way you maintain the systems that you put in place.”

Interviewee: Sue Rae

Sue Rae is a professional organiser who helps busy people declutter, purge, organize and streamline their belongings, to help improve their space and live a more meaningful life.

To check out Sues services click here.

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