Lessons In Decluttering

The beginning of a new school year is a great time to reevaluate your home and clear your spaces of unnecessary clutter. Depending on your family's habits, decluttering can be a very intimidating process! Where do you start? How much should you get rid of? What do you do with all the leftover junk?

BecomingMinimalist.com offers several creative ways to begin the process of living a simplified life. A few of their ideas, and a few of our own, are below.

Give yourself 5 solid minutes. Commit five minutes each day to cleaning out a drawer, throwing away expired food, or tackling the top of your desk. A small daily commitment that can make a big difference!

Give away one item each day. At the end of the year, your home will be 365 items lighter!

Fill one trash bag or box. How quickly can you fill a trash bag with items to be thrown away? Or how quickly can you fill a box with items to take to a donation center? You'll be surprised at how many things you're willing to part with - and your home will thank you for it!

Try the Closet Hanger Experiment. Rehang all the itms in your closet with the hangers facing the wrong way. When you wear an item, you can hang it correctly. At the end of the season, you'll have a very good idea of what you're ready to give away or sell at a consignment store. Try the same idea with toys, craft supplies, and more.

Take the 12-12-12 Challenge. Find a dozen items you can throw away, a dozen to donate, and a dozen to find a proper place for within your home.

Blitz. Get the family organized each day for a 10 minute blitz of your home. Put away toys, throw away trash, deliver laundry to rooms, and put things in their proper place. With the whole family involved, you're sure to turn a basic chore into a fun family competition!

So now that you've got a few boxes of things to donate and trash, what do you do with them?

Throw Away. Make sure you understand the city's requirements for tossing things like electronics, paint, and old medicine. If you've got more trash than expected, you can request an extra pickup from the city for just $10. Learn more about waste guidelines for The City of San Antonio.

Give Away. Most of us are very familiar with Goodwill, Salvation Army, and our local church donation bins. But there are so many charities out there in need of clothing items, electronics, gently used school supplies, and even eye glasses. Check out this great list of places that will help your items do the most good.

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