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Decluttering And Organising - Lessons Learnt

Discussion in 'Home Decoration & Improvement' started by Needtobestrong, Sep 6, 2021.

  1. Needtobestrong

    Needtobestrong Platinum IL'ite

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    For some reason, last few weeks I’ve been busy in decluttering, cleaning and organising all shelves and cupboards in my home..
    Out of a sense of cleanliness and motivation after seeing many home decor and organizing videos on YouTube.
    I’m living in India, in a busy and somewhat dusty area.
    Few of my observations and lessons learnt
    * Dusting if done once a week is very effective ..if it’s not done regularly, the dust accumulates and it’s so tough to clean a thick layer of dust after some weeks..
    *Organizing kitchen groceries is very important..I had previously not followed a proper system of arranging and labelling kitchen essentials like different dals, spices, rice, etc especially extra packets purchased. and had randomly arranged..as a result, sometimes I used to miss out on buying some grocery item that was about to get over or ending up buying excess of some items which was already there in more quantity leading to it getting stale or even spoilt.
    Now I’ve corrected it.
    * buying excess clothes was a mistake,I’ve done over past few years.
    Due to weight fluctuations, the fit will change. Some are too tight. Some are too loose. Only some fit well.
    Due to pandemic not much scope of utilising as I’m indoors and step out only for essential work.
    So I donated some clothes which were too small, and using some clothes for daily wear at home.
    If I’d not let clothes accumulate, I could have bought clothes as and when required and according to latest trend and size according to weight change.
    *I now buy toiletries as and when needed. I previously used to buy more like, for example, 2 big bottles of lotion as there was buy one get one free offer ...and lotion would just be lying in cupboard and would even be nearing expiry date by the time I get to use it, ..such a waste of money,,so nowadays I buy toiletries like soap, shampoo, lotion, toothpaste, brush etc as and when I need..anyway everything is available online and is delivered within a day or two or even few hours if urgent.
    * Buying smaller packets of biscuits and eatables. Earlier would buy big packet and by the time all biscuits are used they would become soft and would have to throw them away. So I only open small biscuit packets in airtight container and next packet after it gets over. Applies to other snack items too. No purchasing of bigger packets or in excess..saves storage space in our pantry cupboard too.
    Similarly, items like ketchup and jam used only occasionally I dont buy bigger packs but smaller packs only. So no chance of them reaching best before date, I can finish and buy freshly.
    * decluttering needs to be done as a regular activity, lot of storage space can be saved as a result of throwing out unwanted junk items.
    I had accumulated many empty glass containers and flimsy plastic containers and plastic bottles unintentionally and discarded them..
    Was quite Grossed out to find some dead insects while cleaning shelves as there was excess junk.
    * was pleasantly surprised after organizing stationery items, to find the number of pens, pencils, glue sticks I’d accumulated and in good condition so no need to buy stationery items for a long time.
    * minimalism really works as shelves are easier to clean and look neater with less items.
     
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  2. Laks09

    Laks09 Moderator Staff Member IL Hall of Fame

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    I’ve found that if I go to the store without a list, I end up buying things that I don’t need. Making a list is the best way to reduce unwanted things in the house. I never do it though! I have to get to it.

    Getting rid of junk mail/papers/newspapers etc on a daily basis helps. I’ve noticed dedicating an hour every other day to just pick up around the house reduces a ton of clutter.

    Cleaning the fridge weekly before brining the next lot of groceries helps. It helps figure out what is in there that can be used and what needs to be bought.

    Having a no grocery store week or two helps. I tend to use up all of the left overs in the freezer/pantry/fridge etc when I do that.

    Deciding a weekly menu and meal
    Planning beforehand and buying weekly grocery only per the menu really helps. Who goes by menus in my house? I open the fridge, find veggies and cook accordingly for that one meal.

    Getting rid of old shoes/clothes/accessories etc after replacing them with new ones help. For reference, 10 pairs of running shoes are an over kill. You won’t use your old running shoes as sneakers. Chuck them!

    Cleaning out closets and bookshelves before summer ends is a great way to reduce clutter in kids rooms. Twice a year deep cleaning, once before spring semester and once before fall helps keep kids and young adults rooms clean.

    When you have a million legos in the house, it helps making the child organize them into ziplocks or bins. It helps if the said child has ocd and will only put the Lego in the bags labeled 1/2/3 etc according to how they came in the box :smirk:

    SAT/ACT/AP books are the worst. Please give it to charity or to a high schooler who can use it. Don’t trust kids who sah they will sell it whenever. That’s not going to happen!

    Donate gently used office wear to places that help people dress for interviews. It really helps someone down on their luck and we get a clean closet.

    Don’t buy snacks from Costco. It’s a waste of space and you and kids tend to binge if you buy big boxes of snacks from Costco.

    More when I think of it…..
     
  3. NOW

    NOW Silver IL'ite

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    Timely post as we had to just stay home for the labor day weekend and I tackled some decluttering in kitchen and kids rooms. Love the ideas and experiences shared. My goal this school year is to spend an hour in the weekends for decluttering. Need to really step up the game with menu planning and then making the grocery list. Also want to reduce grocery shopping from weekly to bi- weekly if possible..
     
  4. MalStrom

    MalStrom IL Hall of Fame

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    Great thread, OP!
    I just spent the long weekend purging all the clothes my toddler has outgrown starting from newborn. I was irritated to find that several of the clothes I bought when she was a very young infant were still in their wrapper with tags because she was growing so rapidly then. It is a good reminder to be mindful while purchasing.
    I didn’t want to lose the momentum so I also culled her entire toy collection. The clothes and old car seats will be given to a local charity and the toys are going to go to her beloved former daycare provider. I should do this more often!
     
  5. Needtobestrong

    Needtobestrong Platinum IL'ite

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    Laks09 likes this.
  6. brahan

    brahan Platinum IL'ite

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    Great thread!

    Here are my decluttering ways:

    1. Everyday by the EOD I spend 15 mnts to ensure all the stuff are in right place where they should be...I prefer waking up to a clean house
    2. Got a Robo cleaner..Initially was against it..but felt its worth during lock down. So even though maid cleans in the morning, I make sure I run it once in the night before bed..
    3. Weekend I plan 30 mnts to 1 hour on cleaning..I try to keep it simple and consistent..Like rather than targeting the entire room, I do two or three shelves..that way its NOT laborious and it sounds like small achievable targets
    4. I try to involve my daughter(tried with my son and dint work :(. ) in folding clothes ..that way its a good time we both talk and spend time together
    5. Once in 3 months I ensure I give away old, unused clothes, toys book, kitchen stuff to my maid...
    6. I have set expectations with my house peeps that if one new item is being bought home, two old stuff need to be discarded..we cant keep stuffing shelves with way too many items
    7. Initially I used to save books (school) for future reference..but then realised , we are never using it..So am giving the same to society kids. In Our society book exchange is very common, be it school book or Olympiad ..there are always givers and takers.
     
  7. Ramyarc

    Ramyarc Silver IL'ite

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    OCD kid!!
    Lucky you :tearsofjoy:
     
  8. Needtobestrong

    Needtobestrong Platinum IL'ite

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  9. Needtobestrong

    Needtobestrong Platinum IL'ite

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    I am covering the medicines section now...
    Organized the box where we keep our medicines.
    Prior to the pandemic, we used to physically visit the pharmacy to buy meds so I ended up buying more than what's necessary because it was inconvenient to step out often and go to pharmacy just to buy one medicine... and in that box I found so many medicines past their expiry date and discarded them..fact is many of them were unused and unopened and even seal was intact..
    Nowadays, due to pandemic most pharmacies do home delivery and there are umpteen number of pharmacy apps where we can order medicines and get them delivered on a matter of few hours or a day...
    So nowadays I'm only keeping a few standard emergency meds in the general medicine box including paracetamol, emergency painkillers,antibiotics, antiseptic cream, band aids etc.., and I buy my personal medications and vitamin supplements on a monthly basis based on actual requirement...not only do I get fresh meds, I also end up saving money due to online discount and don't accumulate medicines and occupy more space...
     
    Thyagarajan, Laks09 and Madhurima21 like this.
  10. Needtobestrong

    Needtobestrong Platinum IL'ite

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    Thanks friends, for liking my thread and posts.
     
    Thyagarajan likes this.

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