How To Supercharge Your Minimalist Decluttering Motivation

Everyone glances through the glossy pictures of the interior design magazines and wishes they had a house like the ones in the images. For some of us, it can seem like a monumental task to even think about getting our houses looking even slightly similar. We get envious of the huge amount of space these rooms have when really we should be focusing on the lack of clutter they have. There are many benefits to being a minimalist but it can be a struggle to know how to start living a minimalist lifestyle, in this post, we will talk you through some quick tips to help you get the minimalist decluttering bug!

What is a minimalist

Being a minimalist may mean different things to different people. To me minimalism means  living with  only the  things  you need and not having :

  • Six pairs of nail clippers.
  • Thousands of paper clips
  • Three spatulas
  • Six jugs
  • Four mascaras
  • Ten pairs of jeans
  • Three rolls of sticky tape
  • Three hammers
  • Four broken phones
  • Five pairs of unworn  spectacles
  • 300 books

The space in which we live should be for the person we are becoming now, not for the person we were in the past.

Marie Kondo 

What is the difference between decluttering and minimalism?

You’ve read the book about de cluttering and followed the minimalist decluttering tips to the letter, but your house just keeps getting cluttered again and you cant understand why, right?

It’s a common idea that people expect to do a huge minimalist decluttering session without really thinking about what happens afterwards or putting steps into place to change their lifestyle and habits. Minimalism is a way of life, not just a de-clutter purge. Minimalism is the polar opposite of consumerism, it is crafting a life of less stuff, less waste and less stress. It is wanting less, needing less, buying less and giving more. To read about how you can give more of the things that matter to people in need read this post!

How to become minimalist

If you’re wondering how to start living a minimalist lifestyle you should perhaps think about what minimalism means to you.

What is your goal?

Is your goal to reduce the number of items you own?

Is it to be able to treasure the items you love?

Is your goal to be able to live a simple life and spend more time with your kids?

Is it to live in a peaceful environment or is it a mix of all of the above?

Becoming a minimalist is not an overnight accomplishment, it’s changing your habits and lifestyle to become more mindful of your surroundings and the impact you have on the environment, it’s about reducing waste and changing your habits as a consumer.

Becoming a minimalist is about not buying or keeping stuff you don’t need or use, it’s about getting rid of the extra stuff and not buying anymore!

Let’s be known for the lives we live, not the things we can buy.

Joshua Becker

  Minimalist lifestyle tips.

  •  Do you keep extra wrapping paper and sticky tape just in case you’ve got thousands of presents to wrap?
  •  Do you keep six pairs of nail clippers in case you want to cut the toenails of all the people in the village at the same time?
  • Do you keep three spatulas in case the other two break?

See how crazy it all sounds when we put it like that?

You need to break the” just in case” habit and stop clinging on to stuff you don’t need.

My favourite Bloggers The Minimalists, talk about how most things can be replaced within a few hours for less than a few quid if it is to be replaced in an emergency.

I can vouch for this, as I’ve often been known to ask one of the neighbours to open a can of beans for me when my can opener has broken, so we can get by if we have to in an emergency.

Let go of your” just in case” worries and ask yourself when was the last time “just in case” actually happened?

How to start a minimalist decluttering session 

  1. Start with a particular group of items

     We will use candles as an example in this case. Search through the entire house and find every single candle you own .

  2. Put them all together in a pile 

    Group them all together in one spot. It’s not until you’ve gathered every single one you own into one place, that you can really see the extent of how much you are hanging onto just in case you need it.
    It’s also useful to see how much stuff you buy in bulk and hoard, such as cleaning products and beauty products.
    When you see your hoard all bunched together you’ll start to wonder why you’ve got so much stuff.

  3. Discard and donate 

    Get rid of any items you do not use, like or need. Get rid of any duplicates too.

  4. Keep only the items that you use or love, nothing else!

    Do not be tempted to keep just in case items or unwanted gifts. do not feel guilty about getting rid of stuff other people have gifted to you if you don’t want it. They’ll never know you’ve gotten rid of it and once its been given to you its yours to do whatever you choose with. someone somewhere will love your brand new un used unwanted gift!

  5. Find a permanent home for the items you decide to keep.

    Time spent finding a place for everything will ensure that all the members of the family know where to find it and where to return it to, this leads to less mess being left out on surfaces and countertops. knowing where everything lives helps to  reduce the number of duplicate items you purchase when you can’t find stuff!

  6. Stop buying more stuff.

    the key to successful minimalism decluttering is to stop bringing more stuff into your home. Stop buying and try having a no spend month!

  7. Try not to keep things just in case you need them.

    You’ve never needed them yet and probably won’t in the near future!

  8. Refuse to take in anyone else’s unwanted items.

    Say a big fat no to other peoples stuff, especially kids clothes and toys.
    nce people think you will take all their old clutter you’ll soon find that they offload onto you at an alarming rate and it soon gets out of control!  For tips on how to declutter the kid’s rooms click here.

  9. Don’t fall for a bargain!

    Be extra careful you’re not just buying things you don’t need because they’re on sale or they seem like a bargain! It’s only a bargain if you specifically went out shopping for it and found it reduced! remember that sales are full of things that no-one else wanted to buy! That gaudy jumper you just picked up out of the bargain bin will be going to the charity shop unworn in a years time!

  10. Keep up the minimalist decluttering

    Once you have got the minimalist declutter bug, you should try to declutter at least one item per day.  It’s pretty easy to find at least one item to discard in the plethora of stuff we have in our homes.

  11. Don’t go mad at Christmas and birthdays 

    It’s easy to succumb to consumer pressure and to start buying unnecessary gifts. Try to think of clutter free gifts to give such as gift card to a favourite activity, a yearly pass to the cinema or a trip to see a favourite theatre show or musical.

If your spouse is a clutter bug and you need to help them get the minimalist decluttering bug, read this post!

Finding the motivation to start a major minimalist decluttering session can be really hard, especially when you are overwhelmed by a messy house. If you need extra motivation to declutter your messy home click here!

Best minimalist decluttering methods to try.

The box method: this is an extreme way to start minimalism and declutter your life. The principal is that you put everything away in a box and over the course of time you only remove things from the box that you actually use. I haven’t tried this method but I think it’s a great way to weed out the items you never use! An easy way to start to de clutter with this method would be to try it with your kitchen gadgets and drawers first. so pack up all your utensils and gadgets in a box and put it in the garage or basement. every time you genuinely need an item, remove it from the box. After six months anything left unused in the box gets donated.

The mins game:  This is a game originally invented by The minimalists and is now an Instagram phenomenon.  The rules are: On the first day of the month you get rid of one thing, on the second day you get rid of two things and so forth and so on. there are no strict rules as to what you can get rid of, that is entirely left to you! As the month goes on the number of items you need to declutter increases. This is one of the best ways to declutter if you have lots of stuff to simplify. It is also a great way to continue minimalism after decluttering. 

The Kon Mari declutter method:  This is the method that has changed the way I view my possessions and changed the way I shop forever.  It is quite an extreme decluttering method but one, according to Marie Kondo, which has a very low failure rate. The Kon Mari declutter method involves working through the many categories in your home and decluttering anything which doesn’t spark joy. Having categories to work through certainly made it easier for me to declutter. Marie Kondo also touches upon the many complex reasons we hang onto stuff and gives us reasons why we should change our habits. You are encouraged to work through the Konmari declutter categories at your own speed but are advised to work through the categories in the order they are presented in the book. Clothes are the first category as this is the easiest category and you finish with all your sentimental things. The theory behind this minimalist decluttering checklist is that by the time you have worked through all the other easier categories you will find it easier to declutter your sentimental items and minimize your life. In my opinion, this is the best way to declutter if you like to be methodical and don’t want to rebound into old habits.

Frequently asked Q&A

What are some great minimalist products.

We don’t need any products to be a minimalist. There are no special minimalism clothes, no special furniture, the whole point of being a minimalist is to make do with what you have and to stop buying more stuff. This is better for the environment and reduces waste. After a minimalist decluttering session you should be looking to reduce the amount of unnecessary stuff you bring into your home.

Does being a minimalist reduce depression?

If you suffer from depression it is wise to first seek help from your doctor before you start a minimalist decluttering session. Being amid a huge amount of clutter can make us feel overwhelmed and can be difficult to stay on top of things, however, it is important to seek help and practice some self-care before making any big decisions.

How do you declutter your closet?

I find that having a minimalist wardrobe helps with clothing clutter.
creating a daily uniform capsule wardrobe where everything matches, is the key. It makes getting dressed easier in the mornings and creating stylish outfits a breeze. for more information on creating the perfect capsule wardrobe without spending a fortune read this postif you need  a perfect stay at home mum capsule wardrobe, read this post

I would like to declutter my life and become a minimalist. I am finding it I very difficult to get rid of stuff. Is there a way to outsource this?

There are professionals who can help you declutter your stuff. If you think you may have hoarding tendencies it is always better to seek help from someone who specialises in hoarding before you decide to get someone to do any extreme decluttering for you . You can find help here.
If you feel you do not suffer from hoarding tendencies but are rather overwhelmed by mess and clutter then a professional organizer can help you with that. If you’re just wondering where to start decluttering your messy house and need a bit of help, try reading this post.

What are some tips for living a minimalist lifestyle?

1. Simplify your calendar and make yourself un-busy. Start saying no to the things you don’t enjoy doing.
2. Start living with less stuff and decluttering. Start with just one thing like the junk drawer
3. Turn off notifications on your phone 
4. Stop buying more stuff
5. Start a capsule wardrobe 

I want to become a minimalist but I find it so hard to get rid of my stuff because I think that one day I may use it? How do I get out of this habit simply and effectively?

 Joshua Fields Millburn,  from The Minimalists has a simple answer to this , he says if you can replace it within 20 minutes and for less than $20 then get rid of it!

What are some best ways to declutter your digital life?

knowing how to declutter and live minimally can seem overwhelming, decluttering your digital life is a great place to start, read my post here for some fabulous tips on how to start a digital detox and unplug from social media! 

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