Let It Go & Save Storage Space: How to Stop Clutter Shifting

close-up profile portrait of person in a bright, naturally lit room with Vitsoe shelving, carrying one box of clutter. Concentrated facial expression.

Are you clutter shifting instead of decluttering? Here’s why it pays to rethink your approach and let go of some things instead of just moving them around.

Affiliate Disclosure

As an affiliate, we may earn a commission from qualifying purchases made through links on this website from Amazon and other third parties, at no extra cost to you.

In the grand theatre of home management, clutter often plays the lead role, much to our dismay. It’s a familiar script: items accumulate, spaces shrink, and our first act is often a fruitless shuffle of stuff from one corner to another. What if you could just tackle the clutter conundrum?

Clutter shifting is akin to rearranging deck chairs on the Titanic – it looks busy, but the problem remains unsinkable. Instead, the spotlight should be on decluttering and culling, a more effective and long-lasting approach. If you’re feeling like you’re auditioning for a part in Hoarding: The Musical, this read is your backstage pass to a clutter-free life.

Decluttering Beats Moving Clutter Around

Contrary to the popular “out of sight, out of mind” philosophy, simply moving stuff around is like trying to lose weight by changing your clothes. It might look different, but the mass remains. 😅

Decluttering, on the other hand, is a process of selection, reflection, and often, a bit of introspection. It’s about confronting each item in your clutter pack – be it a souvenir spoon collection or a pile of long-forgotten bills – and asking the hard questions:

Do I need it?

Does it spark joy or just sneezing fits?

Does this item belong in my life, or should it be packed away in a museum of past regrets?

close-up portrait of a young blonde woman in a naturally lit room, sitting on a chair sorting through clutter with boxes in the left-hand background.

By choosing decluttering over shifting, you’re not just reorganising your physical space, but also decluttering your mental landscape. It’s the difference between applying a plaster and performing surgery – one covers the issue, the other addresses it.

How Can I Start the Decluttering Process Effectively?

The journey of a thousand miles begins with a single step, and your ticket out of Clutterville starts with a plan. The first step is to create a decluttering schedule that doesn’t clash with any binge-watching commitments. 😉

Jokes aside, begin with a manageable area – a drawer, a shelf, or the Bermuda Triangle of your home (also known as the garage/shed/cellar). Each item you encounter is a question in physical form.

Does this item have a purpose, or is it just a three-dimensional reminder of an impulsive past? Is it something of value, or would it be more appreciated in the hands of someone else?

Think of yourself as a curator of your own museum, where every exhibit (read: item) must earn its place. This step is not just about throwing things away; it’s about reacquainting yourself with your possessions and understanding why they’re there.

If you’re not wholeheartedly on board with keeping an item, say goodbye instead of reverting to the old habit of clutter shifting. You will likely forget about it as soon as it’s gone and out of your way.

What Should I Do with Items I Decide to Let Go?

Making the call on letting of an item is like ending a long-term relationship; it’s best done quickly and decisively.

Once you’ve decided to part ways with some belongings, categorise them for donation, sale, or recycling. Hesitation leads to reunions, and before you know it, you’re back where you started.

A high angle close-up shot of a person's hands pushing a small, overflowing box of various clutter items (like papers, knick-knacks, and unused gadgets) across the floor of an immaculately clean and minimalist living room, showcasing the stark contrast between the cluttered contents and the orderly environment, natural light from a nearby window creating a serene atmosphere

Donating items can be a soul-soothing experience – you know the saying: one man’s trash is another man’s treasure. Selling items, on the other hand, can be both financially rewarding and a lesson in market economics.

Recycling is the environmental cherry on top, allowing you to declutter with a green conscience. Remember, every item you let go is a step towards a clutter-free home and a clearer mind.

Are There Professional Services That Can Help Me Kick the Clutter Shifting?

Yes, in our era of the gig economy, you can outsource your decluttering woes. A professional decluttering partner is like a fairy godmother. Instead of turning pumpkins into carriages though, they come in and help you turn chaos into order.

close-up portrait of a young woman sitting on the floor in a naturally lit room, sifting through boxes of things she has sorted out

These professionals come equipped with a magic wand (disguised as practical experience) and a sprinkle of objectivity, helping you part with items that you’re emotionally tethered to.

They offer not just muscle, but also strategies to maintain a clutter-free space. I’d say it’s like having a flexible personal trainer for your home – they’ll guide you, push you, and help you achieve your decluttering goals.

There are many out there, in all corners of the world. You can find them in an instant by simply doing a local Google or Facebook search for “professional organiser” + your locale. Look for transparent pricing and references when you vet clutter offers.

How Can I Organise the Items I Choose to Keep?

Once you’ve filtered through your belongings, organising what remains is like setting the stage for a more harmonious life. Storage solutions should be practical and cater to your lifestyle. Think Marie Kondo meets IKEA – where joy meets utility.

And labelling is not just for scientists; it’s a power tool of the organised. Create a system where every item has a home and a label – this is especially helpful if you suffer from “forgetful fridge syndrome,” where things go in and never seem to come out. Here’s where a label, memo or supply of sticky notes can come in handy.

What’s key is establishing a system that is easy to maintain. Your future self, who doesn’t have to turn the house upside down to find the winter gloves, will thank you.

Is It Worth Tracking Items Online for Better Management?

In the digital age, where we track everything from our steps to our sleep, why not track belongings? Besides, having a personal inventory tracker is sensible when it comes to insurance claims or managing your estate down the road.

Online tracking is particularly handy for items in storage or those used infrequently. There are various apps and tools that can help you catalogue your possessions. If you’re averse to cloud storage like I am, then setting up a straightforward home inventory tracker is relatively easy, and you can still share it between your devices on your own WiFi at home.

Of course, if you’re old school, nothing wrong with that! You can find nice notebooks on Amazon, which are formatted especially for inventory purposes.

Maintaining a tracker isn’t just about being organised; it’s about being efficiently organised. Knowing exactly what you have, and where it is, can prevent the all-too-common scenario of buying something you already own but can’t find.

Beyond that, it adds a layer of fun – treating your belongings like inventory in a personal warehouse. If you’re a bookworm, you might even like to maintain a separate Consider a book tracker for your collection of books. It’ll keep all your books in one place and you’ll be less likely to forget what you have in your library.

How Can I Maintain a Clutter-Free Home in the Long Term?

Maintaining a clutter-free home is like staying in shape – it requires regular effort and a bit of discipline. Here’s a tip: regular decluttering sessions, say weekly, monthly or quarterly, can prevent the pile-up of possessions.

I’m a huge fan of adopting a one-in, one-out policy: for every new item that comes in, an old one has to leave. Think of it as a nightclub for your belongings, where there’s a strict one-in, one-out door policy. And the price? It’s free. This not only keeps your possessions in check but also makes you more mindful of new acquisitions.

Remember, clutter is often accumulated in moments of mindlessness rather than in moments of need.

What Are the Emotional Benefits of Decluttering?

The emotional benefits of decluttering are akin to the feeling of taking a deep breath in a freshly cleaned room. It’s liberating. I’d say a clutter-free space can truly lead to a calmer, more clutter-free mind.

portrait of a young black lady surrounded by boxes, smiling with satisfaction into the camera after decluttering instead of just clutter shifting

The act of decluttering can be cathartic, helping to let go of the past and make room for the future. It can reduce stress and anxiety, making your home a sanctuary, not a source of overwhelm. This isn’t just about creating space in your cupboards; it’s about creating space in your head.

Can Decluttering Save Me Money in the Long Run?

Beyond the mental and spatial benefits of decluttering, it can also be an act of financial prudence. By decluttering, you reduce the need for extra storage space – a saving in itself. You become more aware of what you own, reducing the tendency to buy duplicates or near-identical items.

This awareness leads to more mindful purchasing, saving you from the clutches of impulsive shopping. In essence, decluttering is like giving your finances a good spring clean.

How Does Decluttering Impact Our Environment?

Decluttering doesn’t just declutter your home; it helps declutter the planet a wee bit. And you’ll find that your space feels much lighter.

In a world increasingly conscious of its ecological footprint, decluttering offers a green benefit when it’s done right. Simply throwing things out adds to our overflowing dumps. But taking some effort to properly recycle, donate and re-sell used items online or at the flea market can significantly reduce the amount of waste that ends up in landfills.

Donating items that are still in good condition can benefit those in need and reduce the need for new items to be produced. And re-selling your stuff gives it a second life, makes someone else happy, and keeps it out of the landfill.

Reducing the demand for new items ultimately conserves resources and energy required for production. Participating in the circular economy is a small but significant way of contributing to environmental conservation.

Commonly Asked Questions About Decluttering

A common query in the world of decluttering is “Where do I start?” I’ve always said the answer is super simple: start small. Start anywhere. A drawer, a shelf, a cupboard – success in these nooks and corners can motivate you for bigger challenges like tackling the cellar or decluttering an overflowing closet.

One of the easiest ways to get started is with a 30-day minimalism challenge. That sounds scarier than it is, I promise. It’s actually a very fun way to get into the groove of tidying up and observe yourself gaining momentum over the course of a month where to you learn to “let it go.”

Discover more about how to get started with the minsgame challenge, including what you need to stay focused.

Another frequent question revolves around the disposal of items. Here, research is key. Look into charities, recycling centres, and regulations regarding waste disposal in your location. Knowledge is power, and in this case, it’s the power to declutter effectively.

Key Points to Remember

  • Declutter instead of clutter shifting: Moving a box of clutter around is a temporary fix; decluttering addresses the problem at its core.
  • Have an effective strategy: Adopt a systematic approach; start small, ask the tough questions, and be decisive.
  • Tap into professional help if you’re struggling: Consider enlisting professional services for efficiency and effectiveness. Their flexible schedules can work to your advantage.
  • Organisation is your key to long-term success: Store and label the items you keep for easy access and maintenance.
  • Track your belongings: Use online tools for better management of your possessions.
  • Consider long-term maintenance: Regularly assess and adjust your belongings to prevent clutter creep.
  • Emotional and financial benefits: Decluttering can lead to mental clarity and financial savings.
  • Environmental impact: Decluttering contributes to environmental conservation.
  • Start small and recycle responsibly: Begin with manageable tasks and stay informed about disposal options.

No matter what your motivation is, it all boils down to this: shifting clutter is akin to chasing your own tail – a lot of movement, but no progress. Decluttering, on the other hand, is the first step towards a spacious, serene, and organised life. It’s about making peace with your possessions and reclaiming your space.

Roll up your sleeves, and let the decluttering adventure begin!

close-up profile portrait of young woman carrying a box of clutter, with many more boxed piled up behind her. She looks a bit overwhelmed and unhappy.
Pin it 📌

About the author

One response to “Let It Go & Save Storage Space: How to Stop Clutter Shifting”

  1. tripichick avatar

    partner and i are alter abled, live in 500 sq feet of ‘affordable housing’ in Eugene a depressed college town with 3% rental vacancy rate.

    Secret is dont buy stuff you dont need. We walk to grocery every day, work at home so dont need clothes. I own three outfits I can wear in public, buncha goodwill stuff at home.
    In eugene one needs a car to offload stuff.

    Library books. No tv.

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *

This site uses Akismet to reduce spam. Learn how your comment data is processed.

Latest Articles