In the previous posts about saving money by living simpler and the benefits of uncluttering were discussed and how it can make you happier and live more free…but how does one actually go about this uncluttering business? You might feel like it will be very exhausting to try and sell all your unnecessary possessions. Not to mention, you will actually have to go through everything, sort it, bin it, box it, and clean the things you cannot part with. And then organize everything from the top down. Granted, this is very daunting, but taking small steps and seeing it as an on-going project to a better life is the key.
If you live with a family, getting them to help you will take some motivation. Luckily, once your other family members see how much better it feels to live in a house that is free from clutter, where everything is easy to find and clean, most of them will come around and help with the next room you sort through. For some, the fear of losing something of value that they could have sold is enough to make them help you sort the stuff. Don’t be scared to help them throw away something you know they’ll never use and listen to your family members when they tell you you’ve only used that foot spa once. When you’re all in it together it makes things much easier.
|An uncluttered family room can still be comfortable, image by Posh Living, LLC|
The same goes for keeping your home uncluttered: once your family values the new, open space they will be less likely to add new possessions or to allow others to bring in clutter. This may cause a few tiffs, but think of it this way: you won’t be fighting about losing stuff in your home as the fewer possessions you have, the less likely you will be to lose something and blame each other for not helping in the search for the car keys, the tog bag or the dog’s lead. Cleaning and tidying will also be much less of a hassle.
If you have kids, take the toys at the bottom of their toy pile and put those toys away where they can’t find them. If they don’t ask for the toy within the next month, they will forget about it. You can keep sneaking toys they don’t play with to the “missing toys” box in a cupboard they won’t look or the garage. Do this every few weeks. If your child gets bored with the toys that are left and asks for new ones, take some from the “missing toys” box and put the ones they are currently tired of in there again. Not only will they find toys exciting again after they were missing for months, making you smile because you don’t have to buy new ones all the time, but there will be fewer toys to lie around the house and clutter up their rooms.
Remember that it is an on-going project, that you have to tackle one area at a time and that it will take a change in your old habits and spending patterns. Kids will still nag for new toys if you go to the shops, so avoid taking them to the mall or toy shops. Not to mention, shopping will go much quicker and easier when you can focus on what you need to buy and you will spend less on things the kids want to eat. Normally, the things that your children want you to buy will be sweets or food with lots of colorants and sugar in them such as breakfast cereals and cool drinks that are expensive and have little nutritional value.
Not taking your kids to the shops will save you money or the guilt of buying them toys and “kids’” food when you know you are on your way to becoming over indebted. There are also much more productive ways for kids to spend their time: seeing friends, exploring new places, having picnics, doing crafts or starting a hobby will be of value to them in the long run.