Have you ever found yourself in front of your closet wondering how on earth you’ve managed to amass so much stuff? If yes, you’re not the only one! Things accumulate over time and it’s easy to feel overwhelmed by the sheer amount of stuff we own, not to mention the idea of keeping it all organized and tidy. In celebration of Earth Day this April, let’s talk more about the concept of decluttering and how it can help you clear your mind.
Firstly, what is decluttering?
When we talk about decluttering, we are referring to the unnecessary clutter in your life. Be it dishes, appliances or clothes… it’s quite typical to have more than you really need. Especially when it comes to clothes—if your wardrobe doors are bursting at the seams, a decluttering is probably long overdue. When you declutter, you will also realize what you have or haven’t used for months, years or even decades. Many things you initially thought would be ‘cool to have’ often turn out to be completely unrealistic in real life. Decluttering is therefore a good way to restore some order— to both your possessions as well as everyday life.
Having said that, what should you do with all the stuff you no longer need? Read on and let’s find out more! Beginning with…
1. Your Closet
The first step is understandably, to sort out the clothes that no longer fit. Things that are too small, too big or just not your style anymore… Be ruthless and make a good ol’ discard pile. Once you have decided what you will keep, here are some ideas of what you can do with the other clothes you no longer need.
One man’s trash is another’s treasure. If your clothes are in fairly good condition i.e. worn but no holes and stains, we recommend donating them to an organization for a good cause. Check out the charity and thrift shops in your area or places that could use extra clothes e.g. shelters for women/children/the homeless.
Selling clothes online has gotten much easier over the last few years. Especially for clothes that are in mint condition/relatively new, selling is a good way to get some of your money back. You can either go the old-fashioned route e.g. selling them at a garage sale/flea market or sell them online on platforms such as Vinted/Ebay.
Give it a makeover
Are your clothes too worn to be given away or sold? Before you go ahead to toss them in the recycling bin, have a look online to see what you can do with old clothes. There are many brilliant ideas out there—be it making a pillowcase out of a shirt, a tote-bag out of a tank top or denim shorts from old jeans. We love Pinterest for its inspirational ideas and tutorials!
2. The Kitchen
Now that we’ve sorted out your clothes, let’s move on to the kitchen which typically also has a fair share of clutter.
From airfryers to sandwich and waffle makers… there are just too many appliances out there tempting you to “Add to Cart”. Many of these appliances take up a permanent spot in your kitchen but are only used sporadically. If you’ve been living in your current place for a long time, you might also have a couple of appliances that don’t work as they used to and should be repaired. Trading in is a good option when it comes to electrical appliances. Look into companies that take your old appliances and give you credit for your next purchase. If the item is of sentimental value, you can also find a local handyman to see if it’s worth repairing.
Once the appliances are sorted, what should you do with that chipped mug, worn-out teapot or mismatched bowl? Like you did with your clothes, you can give it a makeover and repurpose it for something else! A mug is the perfect shape for a pencil—or toothbrush—holder while glasses can be transformed into candles. If you’re into gardening, an old teapot can also be repainted to house a new plant. If you’re not in an upcycling mood, many organizations will happily take them off your hands. Alternatively, you can also keep them for the next garage sale.
While you’re decluttering, why not go all the way? Consider this article a timely reminder to throw away old ketchup and mayonnaise sachets from 2016. If you’re like me, you probably have several glass jars with 10% of its original contents untouched since the year before. Empty, wash and dry those jars to store other dry foods e.g. popcorn kernels. Websites and apps like Frigomagic are great for when you have lots of food approaching their expiration date—simply enter the foods you have in your fridge and voilà, recipe ideas will be generated for you based on your preferences. If all else fails, a good stir-fry is a delicious and wonderful way to use up leftover ingredients.
To conclude, decluttering doesn’t mean you should automatically throw all your stuff in the trash. Reuse, donate or repair where possible and by doing so, you will either make someone else happy or avoid having to buy a new item yourself. It’s also important to be conscious about your future purchases: platforms such as Too Good To Go and Vinted are great ways to find great deals at a fraction of the price while opting for refurbishing products help to save both your money and the environment—now that’s what we call a win-win!