Clearing Clutter in 2024
Embarking on a year-long journey to declutter your home can seem manageable at the start of a new year, filled with fresh energy and resolutions. However, as the months progress and the initial enthusiasm fades, the enormity of the task can become daunting. To help maintain focus and make the process more achievable, a month-by-month guide can be incredibly useful. StaxUP Storage put together this guide which is designed to align with specific times of the year and events, making it easier to stay on track.
January: New Year, New Beginnings - Start with the most cluttered area of your home. This could be the garage or a junk drawer, setting the tone for the year ahead.
February: Wardrobe Refresh - Tackle your closets and drawers. The seasonal transition is a good time to sort through clothing. Donate winter clothes you haven’t worn and organize your wardrobe for the coming spring.
- Donate or sell clothes, shoes, and accessories in good condition.
- Have winter clothes laundered or dry-cleaned before storing until next year.
- Try on all clothes for the upcoming season and give away or sell any items that do not make you feel good.
New Habit: As soon as you wear something and notice it doesn’t fit, has a hole or doesn’t flatter you, toss it in a bag in your closet. When the bag is full, donate it.
March: Spring Cleaning - Focus on common areas like the living room and dining room. Declutter surfaces and reorganize bookshelves and cabinets. Get the busiest zones of your house clutter-free this month.
- Put away stray items in entrances that belong elsewhere.
- Add extra hooks or shelves if you need them to help corral items.
- Sort through junk drawers, baskets, trays, and any other spots that accumulate random junk.
- Invest in drawer organizers or a wall-mounted organizer to keep small items neat.
New Habit: Do an end-of-day tidy-up of the entryway, putting shoes, coats, and random items back where they belong.
April: Tax Season Organization - Sort through paperwork, files, and digital clutter. Recycle old documents and set up an efficient filing system for the future.
- Sort through random stacks of paper; file, shred, or recycle everything.
- Use one calendar to keep track of all events.
- Switch to paperless bills and statements if possible.
- Clean out computer files and back up everything, using cloud-based storage and an external drive.
New Habit: Sort your mail at the door, tossing junk immediately into a recycling bin.
May: Pre-Summer Sort-Out - Address your kitchen and pantry. Discard expired items and reorganize kitchenware to make summer meal prep easier.
- Toss worn dish towels or cut them up to make rags.
- Sell or give away specialty small appliances and tools you barely or never use.
- Recycle or toss freebie cups and Tupperware containers without lids.
- Toss expired food and spices.
New Habit: Clean out the pantry and fridge before shopping.
June: School’s Out - Focus on children’s rooms, sorting through school papers, toys, and clothes, making room for the next academic year. The end of the school year is a good time to review collected artwork and school papers and choose a small number of special pieces to save in a portfolio or document box.
- Go through schoolwork and art from the past year.
- Gather a bag of DVDs, books, and CDs to give away or sell.
- Sort through toys and games; get rid of those your family no longer enjoys, as well as anything missing key pieces.
New Habit: At the beginning of each school year, pick up a simple art portfolio. When your child brings work home, enjoy all of it for a while, but choose only a few special pieces to put in the portfolio.
July: Mid-Year Review - Revisit areas you’ve already decluttered to ensure they remain organized. This could be a good time for a garage or basement clean-up.
August: Back-to-School Organization - Prepare for the new school year by organizing study areas and supplies.
September: Seasonal Shift - As summer ends, it's time to declutter outdoor spaces and store summer gear. Being outdoors in midsummer makes this a good time to get outdoor tools and equipment in order.
- Get rid of broken tools and those you no longer need.
- Sort through gardening supplies.
- Toss worn-out outdoor furnishings and decor.
- If you’ve been collecting items to sell, hold a yard sale this month. At the end of the day, take unsold items to a charity donation center.
New Habit: Keep everything in your garage or shed on shelving, not on the floor. This helps prevent accumulating a pileup of junk and keeps your gear cleaner.
October: Pre-Holiday Prep - Declutter guest rooms and common areas in preparation for the holiday season. With the big holidays coming up over the next few months, October is a good time to get ahead of the curve and sort out your entertaining arsenal.
- Get rid of worn-out and stained tablecloths, placemats, and napkins.
- Count your dinnerware and serving pieces and consider whether you have enough, too much, or too little for the amount you entertain.
- Get rid of decor, table linens, and serving pieces that you don’t like or that no longer fit your lifestyle.
New Habit: Just like creating a wardrobe with lots of pieces that work together, think of creating an entertaining wardrobe that you can mix and match, rather than having lots of distinct sets of dishes.
November: Holiday Readiness - Focus on your kitchen and dining areas, ensuring they are ready for holiday cooking and entertaining.
December: Year-End Wrap-Up - Reflect on the year’s progress and tidy up any areas that might have been overlooked.
It's clear that the journey to declutter your home is not just about organizing physical spaces, but also about cultivating habits that lead to a more mindful and simplified lifestyle. The year-long process underscores the importance of taking small, consistent steps toward decluttering and maintaining organization. By aligning these tasks with the rhythm of the year and integrating new habits, this guide has made the overwhelming task of decluttering achievable and rewarding. At the end of each month, if you end up not having room to store and don’t want to get rid of some items, find your local StaxUP Storage and rent a storage unit. We’re here to help with all your storage needs, rent today at www.staxupstorage.com.