Spring has officially sprung, which means it's time to crack on with that spring clean! Getting rid of your clutter is the perfect way to make your home feel brand new, so we've spoken to Gary Lyons, Managing Director at Plastic Box Shop, to help you get a head start.
1. Set yourself a space limit
Everyone has a few items that hold purely sentimental value in their home. But, if your sentimental clutter is becoming a problem to store, then you need to be strict with yourself about throwing some of it away.
One way to make sure you don’t hold on to too many sentimental items is to give yourself a set limit for exactly how much stuff you'll keep: pick a sizeable box, which will be your designated box for any sentimental items, and you won't allow yourself any extra space.
This way, you'll have a hard limit on how much you can keep, which should give you the push you need to make tough decisions.
2. Tackle the project in stages
If you've built up several years of clutter, then chances are you aren’t going to be able to deal with it all in a single session.
Trying to take it all on in one day will probably just leave you feeling overwhelmed, so try breaking the problem down into smaller tasks, instead. Take the problem one room at a time and sort through areas zone by zone. This way, you'll be less likely to give up before finishing the job!
3. Use the one year rule
When sorting through your clothes, old kitchen gadgets and anything else that isn't sentimental, use the one year rule.
The Rule: If you haven't worn/used it over the past year, then it doesn't stay.
Difficult though it maybe, if you haven't used it in the past 12 months then it's more than likely that you won't experience a time where you will use it in the future. Unless it's skiing or holiday clothes that you didn't use last year, take the rest of your unworn items to the charity shop, or even sell them online to make a bit of dosh!
4. Be pragmatic
Clearing through sentimental items can be quite emotional. But the one thing to remember is that your memories can stay, even if the object doesn't. Try and streamline your memories into things you have actually looked at over the years.
Photo albums are a great compact way storing memories, but when sorting through your other bits and bobs ask yourself when was the last time you actually wanted to look at them; chances are, you probably forgot you had quite a few of them!
5. Use quick decluttering methods for a flash clean out
If you’re short on time, or don’t have that much clutter to deal with, then you could benefit from a quick-fire decluttering trick. Try the fifteen-minute bin bag challenge: simply grab a bin liner, set a timer for fifteen minutes, and see if you can fill it before it goes off.
If you'll be decluttering your children's rooms, you could even get the kids involved — they’re much more likely to part with old toys if you turn it into a game. Perform the challenge daily, and after a week or so you should find that you have much less clutter to deal with when spring cleaning your home.
For more advice on tackling the big annual clean, head to www.plasticboxshop.co.uk.