When did you make the time to declutter your books? If you’re like me, I’m tipping it hasn’t been recently.
Declutter your books
Declutter your books in 5 easy steps.
When your books start to build up and create clutter on your bookshelves, bedside table or book shelves its time to declutter. So here’s 5 steps to help make the process of decluttering your books easier.
Set time aside to declutter your books.
You need to set designated time aside if you want to declutter any space. If you don’t have an hour, then just allocate 10 or 15 minutes and don’t stop till the time is up. Just remember though, once you have culled and decluttered your book shelve, bundle the books up ready to be dropped off (also set a date by which they must be dropped off). If you only have 10 or 15 minutes for a declutter session, then also make sure you set yourself a goal as to when you want to have the entire book shelve decluttered.
One shelf at a time.
Like any declutter project you need to start small. So in this instance when you are decluttering your book shelf, start decluttering one shelve at a time. Work from the top down. And if they are spilling out onto the floor, then that is the best place to start your declutter.
Will you really read it again?
I know myself, I had a heap of books that I was never going to read again. So I decided it was time to clear the clutter and let go. With any decluttering that you do, maximum impact is made when you can let go of more items. Plus, it is so much easier to organise and style a book shelve that is not jam packed with books. So keep that in mind with you when you start your declutter.
Why are you keeping those books anyway?
I realised that I was keeping a heap of my old university books. Why? I think it was because of all the memories that they brought back. But the reality was, I was never going to use my Macro Economics book again (I hated the subject then and my opinion has not changed), so why was a keeping it, so they had to go. Declutter and be gone!
Declutter your books and donate.
Feel good about decluttering your books by donating them to someone who can use them. I recently did a declutter for a client and we donated books that were in very good condition to her local library. The library then sold the books and used the money to buy more books.
Other places to donate books to include:
https://www.footpathlibrary.org/contact-us/ they have branches in Melbourne, Sydney, Brisbane and Perth.
The Lifestylers Group provides decluttering assistance in Melbourne, Sydney, Brisbane and Perth. For assistance with any declutter project (the kitchen, bedroom, office, wardrobes, garage) contact us.
Image credit: http://bliss-athome.com/about/
Don’t make these 4 mistakes when decluttering. If you keep motivated and inspired you will achieve great results. Make sure you have a plan and keep focused on the job at hand. Their is nothing more rewarding than standing back and admiring your work, once the job is done. I often find myself going back to a cupboard that I have organised, opening the doors and having a quick peek in to see my decluttering effort.
1. You don’t think there is a problem
Time to declutter and organise your wardrobe
You have become so use to living in a mess that it has become normal. It doesn’t worry you anymore that the dining room table is full of papers and stuff. You cannot see the office floor because of all the paperwork lying around but that is fine because you have just become accustom to it. You get frustrated when you go to get dressed for work because you cannot find anything, but that’s just normal now because it happens every morning.
2. You procrastinate
It’s easy to get overwhelmed by the job at hand and just not do anything because you don’t know where to start. If you are struggling then perhaps book the services of a declutter expert to help you. It’s amazing how motivated you become once you know someone is coming to your house to go through your wardrobe!!
3. You don’t have a plan
To do list
You need a vision if you are going to get anywhere. Often clients stand at the door to the room and because they don’t know where to start, they simply close the door again.
It’s easy to get overwhelmed so having a plan or a vision is essential. I always ask clients how they visualize the room once it has been decluttered. It helps them to get inspired and motivated about the declutter process plus they have a goal to work towards.
I also recommend decluttering one shelve at a time. Start small, work through that area then start on the next one. Use these 4 categories as a guide to help you group declutter and group items.
- Cull (throw)
4. You lose motivation
Declutter and get organised
It’s easy to lose motivation especially if you cannot see much of an impact in the room you have been working in.
Decluttering can be a big job especially if you have a room full of stuff. If you are decluttering an office it can be much harder than decluttering a wardrobe because you physically have to inspect each piece of paper in case it relates to tax. Where as you can make a big impact in a wardrobe in a small amount of time by simply throwing out a couple of big, bulky items. Therefore, it’s important to remind yourself that your mess that may have been building up over a number of months or years, is not going to disappear in a matter of minutes. It might take a couple of hours or even a couple of days to see a difference.
It might also be a good idea to get a declutter expert to help you. They make you accountable and they can give you work to do in-between visits. We often give our clients “homework “to do before we come back and see them again. It helps our clients stay motivated because they have a deadline to work towards.
The Lifestylers Group can work with you to declutter and organise any part of your house: the kitchen, pantry, home office, bedrooms or garage.
If you’ve spent any time in a disorganised man cave or a messy garage (aka Dad’s domain) you will know how helpful a little organisation can be. Here’s 6 ways to help declutter your garage.
Image credit: Bunnings.com.au
1. Clear the clutter in your garage
Start the garage declutter process by grouping items into the following categories:
2. Group similar items together
Now that you have decluttered the garage it’s time to group and store the various items together. If you have a lot of different size nuts, bolts, nails etc., then put them into either small plastic containers with lids or clear boxes with different compartments. They come in lots of different shapes and sizes and you will find a container that is perfect for all of your stuff. I guarantee it will make finding the right size screw so much easier next time.
Containers to keep your garage organised
Image Credit: https://www.masters.com.au/product/100797002/really-useful-box-0-3l-box-16-drawer-set-clear
Containers with compartments – great for the garage
Image Credit: https://www.bunnings.com.au/tactix-20-compartment-organiser-storage-box_p2581003
3. Label it
Now that all your bits and pieces are grouped together, take the garage organisation one step further and label up the shelves and containers so you know where everything belongs.
4. Set up zones in your garage
Set up different areas (zones) in your garage to store things. For example put all your garden tools and equipment together in one area/shelve.
Peg boards like this are the perfect way to keep tools organised and off the workbench. Alternatively, you could place them underneath the bench. By making specific areas to put different items in it creates a more organised garage which in turn makes it so much easier to find things.
An organised garage
Image credit: http://wonderfulengineering.com/40-awesome-ideas-to-organise-your-garage/
Image credit: http://wonderfulengineering.com/40-awesome-ideas-to-organise-your-garage/
5. Shelve it
You can buy different sorts of portable shelves that are easy to install and will provide extra storage space. They are also portable so you can take them to your next garage and you can make them into different configurations such as a low work bench or high shelves.
Image credit: https://www.bunnings.com.au/our-range/storage-cleaning/storage/garage/shelving
6. Create space by hanging items
If you need to store things like bikes, fishing rods, long pieces of timber or pipe you can use a range of hooks secured from the ceiling. It gets everything off the ground and keeps your work benches and floors clutter free. Or store large tools with a unit like this.
Racks for the garage
Image Credit: https://www.bunnings.com.au/storease-large-tool-hanger_p2580042
Or try this wall mounted bracket to hang your fishing rods from.
Organised fishing rods in the garage
Image Credit: https://www.bunnings.com.au/storease-15kg-wall-bracket-fishing-gear-hook_p2582761
I hope that I have given you some inspiration with my 6 ways to help organise your garage. Set aside a weekend, be prepared to get down and dirty and do some serious decluttering and get your garage organised.
A unique gift for Dad – A garage declutter
Instead of giving another boring tie or DVD give a gift that is a little more practical. Dad’s love gifts that they can use over and over again. And, if it means every time they walk into the garage it looks schmick and organised and they can find their stuff, they will love it. A garage declutter is a perfect Father’s Day, Birthday or Christmas gift.
Whether you call it a professional organiser, clutter buster or home organiser, the names all mean the same thing. A home organiser is a person who helps to organise your home.
The job of a home organiser
You don’t just need to be super organised to be a professional organiser or a home organiser. Whilst that is important you also need some other important skills. You need to be able to understand and empathise with people. You need to be assertive without coming in and taking over. You need to be able to look beyond the clutter and create a vision for a room by simply standing at the door to the room. You need to be a quick thinker, faster worker and motivator.
As a home organiser, our job is not just about coming to a clients home and organising the perfect bedroom, office or kitchen, it’s about more than that. It’s also about giving our clients the necessary tools and strategies so they can keep this space organised once we leave. Therefore, being able to communicate is an important skill that any professional organiser or home organiser needs. Small rooms, the lack of storage and systems in a home or home office means that some nifty problem solving and troubleshooting is also required at all times.
About our home organisers
Luckily, we have a team of lovely and trustworthy ladies who perform our professional organising and home organiser services. They each have different personalities and specialise in different areas of organising. For us, when we start work with a new client, we always like to match them up with the most suitable professional organiser or home organiser (both skill and personality wise). After all, you have got someone coming into your home and going through your wardrobes and belongings with you, so you want to like them. That is one of the benefits of having a range of professional organisers and home organisers. You get the right person, who’s perfect for you and your home.
More than just a home organiser
I also think that is why we have so many repeat clients. (The Lifestylers Group started in 2005 and is growing from strength to strength each year). When you work with a homer organiser who is perfect for you and your home, you build up a level of trust. Once a client experiences what our professional organiser or home organiser can do for them, they often get them back again. For some clients, this might simply be an annual spring clean. For others it might become a regular occurrence, whether that be weekly, fortnightly or monthly until their home is organised. And for some clients the role becomes more than just home organising. It’s more like a private pa, virtual pa or personal concierge service. Basically, whatever is on their list gets organised. One of my team does the most diversified range of tasks for a regular client – things like:
- Paying bills and filing
- Buying the kid’s birthday and Christmas presents
- Booking restaurants and helping to plan holidays
- Organising home maintenance and supervising trades
- Visiting Australia Post
- Running errands
- Planning the kids birthday parties
So if you have a list of things on your “to do list” that you never seem to get done, then perhaps a professional organiser or home organiser might be the solution you need.
If you have ever wondering how a home organiser can help you, then give us a call. We can have a chat and go through the challenges you are facing in your home, office or life. Our home organiser services are available in Melbourne, Sydney, Brisbane and Perth.
I have met Peter Walsh a number of times and have heard him speak on all things decluttering and organising. It’s great to see an Aussie be so successful in the USA especially on a topic that I am so passionate about also. He is a lovely, down to earth guy who has some very practical tips to help you declutter and get organised. Decluttering the Peter Walsh way is fun and an easy process. After watching him on the Living Room, it got me inspired so I have included a couple of my favourite Peter Walsh declutter tips below. I hope you find them useful too.
Peter Walsh with Natalie Morey, Professional Organiser, The Lifestylers Group
He once said that “the secret to successful decluttering is this: you’ll never get organized if you don’t have a vision for the life you want”. This is so true. People have got to want to change the way they do things. They need to have a goal in mind about how they want that space to work. When I start working with a client, I get them to stand in the room and tell me how they would like to see it. It helps them develop a vision and get them motivated for the declutter process.
Another point that I think is really important to mention is that a large portion of why people need help to declutter and get organised is that they have developed bad habits. The kitchen table becomes the dumping ground for your bag, the mail and anything else you bring into the house. That pile of newspapers sits on the bench because you plan to read them at some point. When we do a declutter session with our clients we spend some time talking about this, because it’s important that people start to identify how and why the clutter is building up in their home.
Decluttering the Peter Walsh Way – The Linen Press
I love Peter Walsh’s brilliantly simple linen system. To store his white sheets, he the folds fitted sheet, top sheet, and extra pillowcases inside a pillowcase of the same set. Needless to say, he never has to ransack his linen press for an elusive match.
Decluttering a Linen Press
Decluttering the Kitchen
Image Credit: Photo: David Tsay
Decluttering the Peter Walsh Way – Plastic Food Storage Containers
To avoid accumulating a draw full of mismatched plastic containers in ten colours, Peter Walsh uses just one brand of food storage container so lids will always fit. He stacks just a few sizes in a cabinet for easy access.
However, if you don’t want to have the cost of replacing all of your plastic containers at once start with this declutter tip. It’s one of the first things I do when I am decluttering plastic containers in a client’s kitchen. Match up all the containers and get rid of any that don’t have any lids. I cannot tell you how many times I find tones of missing lids in client’s homes. They clutter up the cupboard and just get moved from one spot to another, because you can never find the matching lid. Once you have done this, stack them neatly inside each other to save space.
Decluttering your wardrobe
Decluttering the Peter Walsh Way – Wardrobe Decluttering: Reverse Coat Hanger Trick
Turn all the clothes hanging in your wardrobe so that the hangers face back-to-front. For the next six months, if you wear an item of clothing, return it to the wardrobe with the hanger facing the correct way. If you try it on but decide not to wear it, make sure you put it back with the hanger turned backward. No cheating. Be prepared for a shock; you are going to find you own lots of clothes you never wear. You should seriously consider decluttering and getting rid of anything you don’t wear regularly.
I love this quote by Peter Walsh: “Set limits for the amount of space you’re prepared to dedicate to items i.e. clothes, toys etc. – and stick to those limits. Three bins for toys, four shelves for baby cloths. Kids only need you, not all the stuff you feel attracted to”.
Keeping toys organised is a big problem many of our clients face. I am a big believer of the principal “one in” “one out” when it comes to containing the amount of “stuff” you have . So next time your child is given a toy, select an existing toy that you can donate to charity and know that you will be giving it to a child less fortunate than yours.
If you need help with your decluttering and home organising, then contact The Lifestylers Group. Based in Melbourne, we are experts at helping people to declutter and organise their homes, lives and houses.