Do you have drawers full of clothes you don't wear? Rooms full of junk taking up space. Are you a bit of a hoarder? How much stuff do you have in your house that you don't really need or use? Now's the time to have a good clearout and here's how to do it.

It's probably taking up more than physical space, how does it make you feel emotionally - overwhelmed, frustrated, disorganised, even lethargic?

Step 1 - Get Ready.

Create a list. Go through each room in your home and make a list of all the areas, drawers, cupboards that need clearing. Sort this into small, medium and large. Pin it up where you can see it.

Step 2 - Get Set.

Get four boxes label them - Rubbish, Charity, Sell, Undecided.

Step 3 - Get Clearing...

Go through each room - take just 15-30 minutes and tackle the small areas first, then when you have time the medium and large areas.

Work on one area each day and tick them off your list. Either put things away where they belong or place them in one of the four boxes. Place the Undecided box in a cupboard, attic or basement and come back to it in six months. If you haven't needed anything in it in that time - throw it away.

Clothing - when did you last wear it, does it fit, do you absolutely love it? Anything you haven't worn for two years - put in a bag and take to your local charity shop. Only buy things that make you look good as you are now - not when you lose those few pounds.

Paperwork "handle it only once" or in reality twice. First when it comes through the door. Is it for action/junk or filing? Action -deal with it immediately or put it an 'action' folder/tray and deal with it in the next 2-3 days. Filing - tackle this on a weekly basis. Junk - straight into the bin.

Reduce the junk mail you receive - ALWAYS tick the box on any form to opt out. Sign up with the mailing preference service to opt out of unsolicited mail

Magazines - how often do you read them all. Tear out and keep any articles that are of particular interest. Read them as soon as you can. Cancel subscriptions for those you no longer read or value.

Things you no longer use - gadgets, sports equipment, etc., unwanted gifts, impulse buys - things you bought but don't like or don't use. Either sell them, pass them on or give them away.

Decluttering questions to ask: Do you love it? Do you use it? Does it make you feel good? Learn to say no, so you don't clutter up your life with things that aren't important to you.

Get into the habit of setting aside a few minutes each day or a block of time each week to keep areas tidy and clutter free.

To avoid clutter accumulating - when you buy something think first - do you really need it? If you find it hard to let go, each time you buy something new, get rid of something so at least it's not increasing.

Notice how you feel after you've cleared out an area - whether large or small. You should feel a sense of achievement, satisfaction, relief and/or a burst of energy.

Step 4 - Reward Yourself.

Create small rewards for your effort as you go through the process, i.e. buy yourself a new item of clothing for clearing your wardrobe out,

See what you can do to create your own clutter-free existence and see what it brings in for you.

Copyright 2005: Clare Evans

Author's Bio: 

Clare works with busy, stressed individuals and small business owners to help them plan and organise their time more effectively. Learn how to prioritise, plan and delegate, organise your perfect life, organise it effectively and enjoy the process. Spend your time doing what matters and stop worrying about the things that don't.