Are the ghosts of dead items haunting the dark recesses of your closets, drawers and basement? Dead items are things that have no sentimental value, no practical value, and no financial value and yet they take up valuable space in your home. Because of this, decluttering by removing dead items from your home is one of the easiest and least scary ways to free up space.
Sometimes bad storage decisions are hidden in plain sight. I had boxes in my closet that were full of items that had been hidden away in unmarked boxes for so long I forgot what exactly was in those boxes. Eventually curiosity and the desire to declutter got the better of me and I went through the boxes to rediscover the "treasures" that had been important enough to take up precious closet space. I was shocked to discover that one good size space hogging box was filled with nothing but empty boxes! I probably kept the empty boxes in case I ever needed to ship a gift to someone, but the reality was that I never needed or used those boxes so I got rid of them. I a product you buy is still under warranty, by all means keep the box, if on the other hand, you have more empty boxes tucked away in your closet than a moving company, it's time to recycle some of those empty boxes and free up closet space for items you want easy access to.
Here's some food for thought, maybe you don't need more kitchen storage. Maybe what you really need is to remove items from your kitchen that are way past their expiration date. Dig through your kitchen drawers and cupboards and you may be surprised to discover everything from expired vitamins, spices that lost their flavor/potency long ago, worn out dishes that belong in the recycling bin, and broken appliances. The junk drawer is a veritable graveyard of useless items such as dead batteries and unidentifiable parts that should go to something if only you could figure out just what that something was. Recycling or disposing of dead items and keeping what works for your life is a key ingredient to making the most of your kitchen space.
A home office buried alive under irrelevant paperwork and miscellaneous clutter is not only unproductive it's an unpleasant environment to work in. A desk can easily turn into a dumping ground for irrelevant items if you aren't careful. Business cards picked up at long forgotten networking events that you didn't follow up on, papers with outdated or irrelevant information, a pileup of nonworking pens packed into a pencil jar, all of these things take up precious real estate on your limited desk space. Even if you just spend a few minutes a day going through through stuff and "filing" papers and business cards ones that simply aren't relevant into the recycling bin this will dramatically cut down on paper piles. If your pen collection is out of control, simply remove pens from that jammed pen/pencil jar one at a time and try to write something with each pen on a piece of scratch paper. If the pen doesn't write, it's time to dump it. This is super time saver because you won't have to dig through a bunch on nonworking pens the next time you need to make urgent notes.
Is your living room or den starting to look a little too lived in? The living room or den can quickly turn into a dumping ground for outdated magazines and catalogs you never got around to reading, homeless items like toys and games your kids never play with because they are broken or missing pieces, remote controls to TVs that you replaced long ago with a newer TV. An easy way to uncover the lovely living space buried under all that clutter is to coordinate your clean up efforts with your TV viewing habits. When it's time for a commercial break get up, pick up one item that needs to go into a trash can or recycling bin, toss the item and enjoy the rest of the show. Do this often enough and pretty soon your living room will be ready for its close up.
Has your garage become a veritable graveyard where once useful items go to die? Toxic pesticides, old paint, rusted nails, CFL light bulbs and many other common household items are too dangerous to simply toss in the trash. To safely dispose of questionable contact your local recycling center to find out how to dispose of these items safely. As long as you are discarding items that serve no purpose in your life, go ahead and look around your garage for sporting equipment, lawn care items and anything else that is covered in a tell tale layer of dust that tells you it's time to get rid of these items to free up your garage space for. Donate functional items to someone who will use them for something besides garage decorations.
I don't care what the fashion experts say. Every wardrobe should have a certain amount of crappy clothes. Those faded T-shirts, baggy sweats and clothes with holes are perfect for dirty jobs like housework, but unless you do dirty jobs for a living, most of your wardrobe should be too nice to wear for cleaning the toilet. Go ahead and dump the frumpy, badly fitting, faded clothes and upgrade your wardrobe piece by piece by shopping regularly for replacement pieces. It's a good idea to have some empty hangers hanging in your closet. A few empty hangers or some free dresser drawer space sends the message that you are making space for something better than your unflattering cast offs because you have enough self respect to recognize that you deserve better to wear clothes that make you look like a homeless person.
Like a cluttered closet, a bathroom filled with expired and unused beauty products also sends the message that you don't care about your appearance. Proper grooming is sign that you are willing to make an effort to look good because you feel good about yourself. Proper purging and organizing is a sure sign that you value your time too much to go rummaging around for fresh beauty products that work properly.
No matter what part of your home you choose to organize, removing dead items frees up space for appealing and useful items that enhance the quality of our lives in big and small ways. Sometimes removing dead items frees up space for something better to take its place. Sometimes the best result of dumping the dead weight is the empty space that remains that allows your home to breathe and allows you to focus on the things that bring beauty and joy to your life.