Set a timer and go!
If you're going through a phase where everything feels a little chaotic (perhaps both physically and mentally!), we highly recommend decluttering just one or two small areas of your home to help you feel a little more put together. It's incredibly satisfying when you see the organized end result, even if it's not a very big mess, and sometimes, it'll encourage you to keep going! Just a few minutes of sorting through little pockets of micro clutter can have a huge impact on your senses of accomplishment, trust us. So get your laser focus on—here are five things you can quickly tackle.
Decluttering your handbag can make it easier to find things. After all, there are few things as stressful as fumbling through your purse at an inopportune moment. Professional organizer Ashley Stewart of OCD in Arizona recommends starting by going through your receipts and wallet. “Throw away all old receipts. For receipts that need to be saved for returns—store them in a pouch.”
After that, remove all random trash from the bag such as loose papers, pens, lipstick,, and glasses.
Finally, Stewart suggests re-organizing with pouches. “A pouch for makeup. A pouch for your phone charger. A pouch for receipts.”
Much like purses, cars can become dumping grounds. Fortunately, these spaces are very easy to clean out. Start with food wrappers (don’t be embarrassed—everyone eats in their car) and move on to empty water bottles. Don’t forget to check under the seats.
Then open up the glove box. This is a space where we tend to stash things and then forget about them for years. It should only contain important things like your insurance card, registration, and manual. Next, clear out the center console as well as any door and seat pockets.
Bonus points if you've got an extra five minutes: Go through your trunk. Don’t worry, it’s okay to keep some essentials in this space such as reusable grocery bags, jumper cables, and a few extra bottles of water.
There is so much we keep in our pantries that it’s easy to forget what’s there. So these spaces become very cluttered. Start with your spices. Anything that’s expired should go. Then go through foods like pasta, crackers, nuts, and snacks. Toss anything expired or stale. Finally, evaluate your canned goods. Move anything that’s close to expiring to the front of the pantry so you can use it ASAP.
Refrigerators need to be decluttered regularly because you don’t want to eat anything that’s gone bad and get sick. Work your way from bottom to top. Check the fruit and veggie bins for anything that’s on its way out. Then evaluate the shelves working from bottom to top. If you can’t remember when those leftovers were first consumed—put them in the garbage immediately.
Go through your cheese section. Anything with mold should be thrown out because eating moldy cheese is dangerous. Finally, declutter the doors. Say goodbye to any condiments that are almost empty or expired.
Your Desk Drawer
A desk drawer can get extra messy. Start with things like pens and pencils—anything down to the nub or dried out needs to go. Old receipts, gum wrappers, and loyalty cards should be removed. Then check for broken paper clips and lone staples.
Then, re-locate anything that shouldn’t be in the drawer such as books, change (or cash), gadgets, and gift cards. Make a separate stash for mail and go through that at a later time.
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