Why I Don’t Host Decluttering Challenges Leave a comment

“Decluttering Challenges” are all the rage at this time of year.

I get it. Bloggers know that this is the time when organizing-related website traffic surges.

People are ready to declutter. The post-Christmas mess combines with time off work and excitement about changes in a new year, and decluttering fever hits.

A decluttering challenge at this time of year makes sense.

Really. Big plans and commitments to get rid of X number of things over the next month or year are exciting to make. Joining in with others who are as excited as you are might just be the thing that makes it all stick this time!

But I don’t host decluttering challenges.


I’ve tried it, though not to the extent of many, and I noticed something.

My people aren’t so much into commitment. 

Or maybe, we aren’t into being told what to do.

I know that’s a big part of (at least one of) my personal problem(s).

Declutter! Yep! I’m in!

When I’m in the mood to declutter . . . 

But if I have something else I need to do, or even something else I want to do, a decluttering assignment showing up in my email inbox makes me narrow my eyes and think unkind thoughts about the sender.

I think a big part of this is that those of us who struggle with clutter on the level I did are easily overwhelmed. There’s just too much. And someone telling me that today is the day I have to test all the batteries in my battery box might just send me over the edge.

I mean, who cares about batteries if my master bedroom floor is still covered in gift wrapping scraps??!?

And, what’s this about a battery box? I’m supposed to have a battery box??!? My batteries are scattered through the house in random drawers and on random surfaces!

That’s all hypothetical, of course.

Let me be clear that these challenges are good things and there are a whole lot of people in this world who thrive within challenges that send them assignments like that.

But I’m here for the ones who don’t. 

For the ones who’ve failed at such things so many times that they wonder if there’s any point in even trying.

The ones for whom hope feels foolish.

I’m all about helping you declutter. But my goal is to provide ways for you to declutter in the moment.

Not to plan to declutter or commit to declutter, but to declutter now and make a big impact. While the urge is strong and the opportunity exists.

That’s the beauty of decluttering. Unlike “getting organized,” which I know from experience offers fleeting success, decluttering sticks.

Once something leaves the house, it’s gone. That particular item can’t re-appear in a different closet or trip me in the middle of the night.

And things being gone makes my house look and feel and function more organized.

So I’m here to help you get stuff out when you want to declutter. And help you understand that the more you get out, the more you’ll be motivated to keep getting stuff out.

Visible decluttering success will keep people like me going more than falling behind on assignments.

So how do you go ahead and make decluttering progress now instead of planning to make it later?

Grab a black trash bag (black, so the people in your house can’t see what you’re putting inside of it) and start throwing away trash in the most visible area of your home.

Take Easy Stuff to its already established (decision-free) home.

Stick DUH clutter into a donatable Donate Box.

Ask my two decluttering questions about every single other thing in this visible space you’re tackling.

Purge down to the limits of your space using The Container Concept.

If you need more instruction than that, check out these resources:

Note: These resources all work in whatever amount of time you have available. If you have five minutes or five hours or five days to spend decluttering, you’ll make progress and never a bigger mess when you follow my strategies.

Decluttering at the Speed of Life – My book about decluttering and how to work it into your real life. I teach you the mindset changes you need to make about clutter and your home, and teach you my five step process listed above. I then apply that process to the different rooms in your home. I also teach you how to help other people in your life declutter, and tackle the very real issue of emotional attachment to stuff.

How to Manage Your Home Without Losing Your Mind – My book for the person who is overwhelmed in her home. I teach you what it takes to get your out of control home under control and keep it under control. There’s decluttering in this book since that’s a big part of keeping your home under control.

The 5 Step Clutter Shakedown – This is a video course in which I teach you my five step process through visual demonstration. I originally called it The 5 Day Clutter Shakedown, but I wish I hadn’t. It’s not necessary to set aside five days. You can see progress if you only get through the first step.

Free Stuff

Almost a decade of blog posts are here on this website. I have recorded the successes and failures and moments of understanding of my own deslobification process and they’re here for you to read whenever you want.

Get started by learning how to declutter without making a bigger mess, or reading about the moment when I figured out how containers are actually supposed to help you, or just read from the beginning.

I have talked into a microphone in my living room for almost 100 hours now, and you can listen to all those thoughts/ramblings in my podcasts. They’re about 30 minutes each, so you don’t have to commit to all 100 hours. If you don’t know what a podcast is, it’s like a radio show you can listen to on your smartphone or from your computer, and there’s a video on this page that explains how to listen.

Get the five steps in a free printable when you join my newsletter.

Cas Dawn and Dana teaching decluttering organizing and minimalism

Have you heard? I’ve teamed up with Cas from Clutterbug and Dawn from The Minimal Mom to bring you the course: Take Your House Back! Go check it out! It’s self-paced, so you can make it work for your needs.


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