How to declutter your bedroom

Elizabeth Larkin is a professional organizer with a strong interest in productivity, time management, and process refinement. She used her organizational skills and effectiveness to pen articles with helpful information on cleaning, organizing living spaces, and decluttering.

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​The Spruce / Letícia Almeida

Whether you tackle it as part of downsizing effort or simply to simplify your life, decluttering an entire home is a big job. The best way to make decluttering easier is doing it in stages—focus on one room, one space, or even one zone within a room (like your kitchen cabinets), completing the job fully before moving on to the next space. This will also build confidence as you experience visible success at each step.

You don't need fancy tools to declutter your home, but you do need five baskets or bins defined for these five purposes:

  1. Put Away: This container is for items that have crept out of their storage spaces. This could mean a coffee cup in the bathroom or a sweatshirt in the kitchen. These are items that will go back in their designated spots.
  2. Recycle: This bin is for items that need to be recycled, such as paper, plastic, or glass.
  3. Fix/Mend: Use this container for items that need further tinkering, such as a pair of shoes that you love but which need to be cleaned.
  4. Trash: Designate one basket for items you can throw away—things that can go into the household trash immediately.
  5. Donate: Designate one bin for items that you can donate to a charitable organization or another person. These should be items you can imagine another person wanting or needing.

You can use bins, baskets, or even just cardboard boxes for this task. Bring these bins into each room as you declutter or leave them in a central place in your home while you work. The important thing is that you don't go hunting for containers while you're decluttering—set up the bins before you begin.

Here are the best ideas on how to use these five bins while decluttering each room in your home.

The Bathroom

The Spruce / Erica Lang

Start with your medicine cabinet. Take everything out and discard outdated medications, makeup, and skincare products. Put everything you’re keeping immediately back into the cabinet, storing the items you use most often at eye level.

Next, move onto any cabinet drawers. Remove everything, do a quick evaluation of what you're keeping and what you're tossing. Put the items you're going to keep back into their drawers, with the items you use most often in the top drawers.

Now, do the same routine with your shower/tub. Finally, pull everything out from below your bathroom sink and declutter the items there.

Lastly, everything that did not have a home can be quickly sorted into the five baskets or bins you have staged for the purpose.

The Bedroom

How to declutter your bedroom

The Spruce / Letícia Almeida

First, make your bed. It’s hard to feel any progress decluttering a bedroom while an unmade bed stares you in the face.

Start with your nightstands and remove anything on them that doesn’t belong there and put it in your Put Away bin. This may include books you’ve already finished reading, broken eyeglasses, pens and paper, and mail. Throw out or recycle anything that you no longer use, such as empty tissue boxes, pens that have gone dry, or chargers that no longer work.

Do the same with the tops of your dressers, chests, and/or bureaus. Pay careful attention to any clothing that is strewn about. Anything that needs folding or hanging goes into the Put Away bin. If you're afraid it may wrinkle further, you can lay clothes down on your bed.

Go through each bureau, drawer by drawer. Take everything out. Pull out anything that is no longer worn and put it in your Donation bag or box. Fold and store the clothing you’re keeping.

If you keep a desk or vanity table in your bedroom, tackle that next. Resist the urge to shove things back into drawers; instead, put them in your Put Away bin. Toss or recycle any garbage or anything you haven’t used in more than six months.

Return items to their proper places. Fold or hang and store any clothing. If you're now eyeing your closet, we'll tackle that next!

How to declutter your bedroom

Popular opinion: We all strive to be better. If you’re setting goals to improve your relationships, career, and overall wellness, the list should start with an organized space where you can be the best version of yourself. After all, how can you constructively improve when your closet is overflowing, your entryway console is stacked with mail, your kitchen sink is filled with dishes, and your pantry is packed with expired food? That’s where learning how to declutter your home comes in.

Just like a clear inbox can make you feel more efficient, a well-organized home can boost your productivity levels. To help you start on the right foot, we tapped de-cluttering and organization expert Julia Pinsky of Pinsky Project. Ahead, glean a few of her best general tips for getting your home in tip-top shape. Then, find out how professional organizer Shira Gill would approach each room in your house.

Meet the Expert

  • After 15 years in the fashion industry, Julia Pinsky founded Pinsky Project, offering comprehensive services to reorganize your home, work, and lifestyle.
  • Professional organizer Shira Gill’s mission is to inspire people to clear physical and mental clutter.

Don't wait any longer to tackle your clutter. Start with a clean slate by using these decluttering tips in your own home ASAP.

Elizabeth Larkin is a professional organizer with a strong interest in productivity, time management, and process refinement. She used her organizational skills and effectiveness to pen articles with helpful information on cleaning, organizing living spaces, and decluttering.

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There are a few sure signs that indicate it’s time to start decluttering your wardrobe: It’s full of clothes you no longer wear; you can’t find what you need; and it’s so jam-packed that your clothes get wrinkled. Sound familiar? Now might be a great time to whip your wardrobe back into shape.

These tried and true tips to remove clutter will help you clean up your closet once and for all.

Ask the 7 Key Closet Decluttering Questions

The Spruce / Julieanne Browning

Ask yourself the following about every item in your closet:

  1. Do I love it?
  2. Do I wear it?
  3. Does it project the image I want?
  4. Does it itch or scratch?
  5. Does it pinch my toes? Are the heels too high to walk in?
  6. Is it moldy? Smelly? Stained?
  7. Does it fit?

Number 3 is the real “light bulb” question for many people. Even if you love it, do you want to wear it in front of other people? Be a brutal critic. If necessary, enlist a friend to tell you if something is wrong for you. Closet space is limited, so don’t waste your prime real estate on something you’re not crazy about.

Know Where You'll Donate Clothes

How to declutter your bedroom

The Spruce / Letícia Almeida

It’s easier to declutter your closet if you know where you’ll be donating your clothing ahead of time. This way, once you are done decluttering and purging your wardrobe, you can quickly whisk the items off to a deserving recipient making the process much easier.

Another option is consigning your gently used or pricey clothing.

Use a Donation Box for Easy Decluttering

How to declutter your bedroom

The Spruce / Letícia Almeida

Make decluttering your wardrobe easier by having a donation bin, bag, or basket right in your closet. This allows you to declutter your closet and toss items you no longer want whenever you happen upon them.

Commit to a Weekly Sweep

How to declutter your bedroom

The Spruce / Julieanne Browning

The more often you declutter, the less time it will take and the easier it will be. Committing to a weekly clutter sweep means spending 10 to 15 minutes once or twice a week in your closet placing items in your donation box, re-arranging clothing that has fallen out of place, and re-hanging and folding clothes that may be strewn about your bedroom and bathroom. All of this will take much less time than you think if you tackle it regularly.

Evaluate Your Clothes Seasonally

How to declutter your bedroom

The Spruce / Letícia Almeida

There are four easy-to-follow steps:

  1. Take everything out of the closet. Then, wipe down the shelving, dust, and vacuum.
  2. Do a quick purge of anything you're going to donate and items that need altering or dry cleaning.
  3. Put everything back in the closet hanging and sorting by color with most-worn items in front.
  4. Take alterations and cleaning to the tailor and dry cleaner; bring donations to the resale shop or your charity of choice.

Do a thorough closet sweep once a season, or monthly if you live in an apartment with limited closet space.

Maximize Storage Space

How to declutter your bedroom

The Spruce / Letícia Almeida

Are you taking advantage of your closet’s nooks and crannies? You can fit more by maximizing the storage space available by purchasing the best closet storage products. Utilize the closet door by installing hooks and hanging your most-worn jewelry and scarves at eye-level. Consider adding inexpensive shelving if your closet doesn’t already have it or use hanging drawers and shoe organizers to make the most of your space.

Reign In Hoarding Before It's a Problem

How to declutter your bedroom

The Spruce / Letícia Almeida

This may be the hardest skill to master. Ask yourself if you're holding onto clothes for any of these reasons:

  • It holds sentimental value.
  • You spent a ridiculous amount of money on the item.
  • You may wear it someday––but who knows when that someday will be?

These are all understandable reasons to hold onto a garment, but the fact remains that you have limited space to store your clothes. If an item is too special to let go, like a wedding dress, find a place to store it other than your closet. For the other two categories, if you haven’t worn the item in over a year, get rid of it. While it may be difficult, wouldn’t you rather have these clothes in the closet of someone who loves them and wears them often?

If learning how to declutter were easy, every home would be clutter-free—and they would all stay that way. Alas, decluttering tips only truly work when paired with a little elbow grease and some commitment: Decluttering is hard work. But figuring out how to declutter your home can lead to a more soothing, less stressful space. It can mean fewer possessions, which means there’s less to clean. When it’s time to pack up and move (hopefully with the help of some solid moving tips), there’s less to pack.

Decluttering does more than remove physical clutter—it can actually make your home calmer—and there are ways to make it easier. Some organizing pros recommend waging a whole-house war on clutter to knock out the excess stuff in one fell swoop, so no room remains untouched. This approach may take a whole weekend (or even longer), but it might also be more successful—and it’ll mean the chore is finished quickly, not left to drag on for months and months.

Decluttering the whole house can also be broken down room by room, so it feels doable. A few new organizers or clutter management tools (think bins, crates, shelving systems, and the like) are suggested but not mandatory. Ideally, at the end of the decluttering process, there’s not much left that needs to be stored, but a little extra equipment can help tame whatever remains.

To use this room-by-room guide to its fullest potential, gather a trusty team—the whole family, ideally. (After all, they helped create the mess, right?) Give every family member a room to declutter, or work as a team to declutter one room at a time. This way, everyone will have buy-in on the success of the decluttering project, and will hopefully do what they can to keep spaces clutter-free for years to come.

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It’s time to clear the clutter!

99 things to get rid of right now without ever missing!

Know exactly what things to throw away to instantly declutter your home.

How to declutter your bedroom

Home is where you and your loved ones should be able to live comfortably.

Sometimes we get a little too comfortable and let things start to accumulate.

I get it, sometimes it easier to hide it, than it is to throw it away.

But at some point, the clutter starts busting out at the seams.

How To Get Rid Of Clutter

Why do we keep so much clutter around when it truly makes us cringe?

Think about it, doesn’t the sight of bills and junk mail piling up on your kitchen counter annoy you? It does me.

In fact, most of the time, the reason our homes look messy is because of so much stuff.

Wouldn’t you love a clutter-free space that is clean and makes you proud?

OK then, it’s time to get rid of stuff!

Why It Is So Hard Getting Rid Of Stuff

The reason why decluttering seems so hard is because we have to have the motivation and the right mindset.

We tend to keep a lot of sentimental things and “someday” items.

I understand that getting rid of sentimental things can be hard, but those “someday” items gotta go!

If you are having trouble finding the right mindset to declutter your home, then read this post about what really helped me when I was completely overwhelmed by the mess.

What To Throw Away

The easiest way to declutter your house is to narrow down all the things to get rid of.

Let’s start with simple because I like simple.

So if something is broken or expired, toss it!

There is no reason it should be taking up space in your home.

The following list will help you get rid of all the easy things that you can throw away RIGHT NOW to instantly declutter your home.

That’s right, there will be no second-guessing this list.

These are all the things you need to throw away anyway. It is easy-peasy!

99 Things To Throw Away To Get Rid Of Clutter

How to declutter your bedroom

Bathroom

1. Samples of products.

3. Expired skincare products.

4. Expired hair-care products.

5. Old washcloths.

6. Stained and ragged towels (instead of tossing, donate to a local animal shelter)

8. Old nail polish

9. Empty bottles

10. Anything you haven’t used in the past 6 months or longer.

11. Old sponges and loofahs.

13. Broken hair tools.

14. Old hair brushes.

Medicine Cabinet

15. Expired medicine.

16. Expired vitamins and supplements.

17. Old toothbrushes.

Bedroom

19. Stained pillowcases.

20. Old throw pillows.

21. Books you didn’t like.

22. Old handbags.

23. Clothes that don’t fit.

24. Clothes that have stains.

25. Clothes that you don’t like.

26. Old underwear.

28. Any clothing item that the elasticity has worn out.

29. Cracked belts.

30. Accessories you NEVER wear.

31. Broken jewelry.

32. Old prescription glasses.

33. Socks with no mates.

34. Ripped comforters.

35. Overused candles.

36. Broken hangers.

37. Old magazines.

38. Gloves without mates.

39. Bras with broken wires or straps.

40. Old electronics. *Tip: You can make decent money by selling your old books, DVDs, CDs, old phones and anything tech-related to Decluttr! They give instant quotes and let you ship it for free!

41. Exercise equipment you never use.

42. Old shopping bags.

43. Trash from your handbag.

For more bedroom decluttering tips check out the FREE declutter bedroom checklist.

Kitchen

44. Tupperware with missing lids.

45. Expired pantry items.

46. Expired freezer items.

47. Recipe books you don’t use.

48. Chipped dishes.

49. Old mugs that no one ever uses.

51. Take-out containers and plastic forks/spoons.

52. Ketchup packs.

53. Paper clutter.

55. Bills you have already paid.

56. Broken canisters.

57. Old water bottles.

58. Old travel mugs.

59. Plastic lids with no matching container.

60. Burnt baking sheet pans.

61. Scratched pots and pans.

62. Old calendars.

63. Grocery bags.

Find more kitchen organization tips here.

How to declutter your bedroom

Click To Grab Your FREE Ticket To The Get Organized Virtual Summit – Happening Now!

Junk Drawer

64. Old batteries.

65. Take-out menus.

66. Old receipts.

67. Business cards you will never need.

68. Expired coupons.

69. Broken chargers.

71. Appliance manuals.

Living Room

73. Old throw blankets.

74. Broken or scratched DVDs/CDs.

75. Chipped knick-knacks.

77. Cords that aren’t needed.

79. Broken blinds.

Kid’s Room

81. Clothes that are too little.

83. Toys they no longer want.

84. Broken crayons/pencils.

85. Old stuffed animals.

86. Stained clothes.

87. Shoes that no longer fit.

88. Old school papers.

89. Books they no longer want.

90. Used up coloring books.

91. Old video games.

92. Games with missing pieces.

Basement/Garage/Storage Area

93. Broken appliances (Some of these could be scrapped at the local junkyard for extra cash).

95. Broken storage totes.

96. Storage totes full of junk.

97. Expired cleaning products.

98. Old wrapping paper.

How to declutter your bedroom

You Are Not Messy You Just Have Too Much Stuff! Grab Your Ultimate Declutter Handbook TODAY!

Things To Throw Away To Instantly Declutter

Throwing away all these things will instantly declutter your home.

Yes, I am sure you will still have other things but this list will get rid of a huge portion of the clutter.

Now you should really take the 30 Day Decluttering Challenge to tackle your whole house!

Don’t do this big decluttering project on your own. Get your family and maybe even your friends involved.

Decluttering your home will lift a huge weight off of your shoulders, I promise!

Now that you have thrown away so many useless things, it’s time to start organizing what you have left.

Read 10 Organizational Hacks I used to actually Clear The Clutter!

For more tips to help you focus on being more MINDFUL, grab your FREE eBook to a More Intentional Life.

Take the year long Declutter 365 Challenge, and each day 15 minutes of work will transform your home. I guarantee very quickly you’ll begin to see results, even if some days it didn’t feel like you made much of a dent.

How to declutter your bedroom#Declutter365 #Decluttering #Declutter” width=”500″ height=”262″ />

What Is Declutter 365?

The idea behind Declutter 365 is simple, yet powerful.

It is to make decluttering a habit by doing some declutter task every single day, so you can reap the rewards without feeling like the process of decluttering is taking over your life.

Each day I provide a 15 minute mission for you to accomplish. This keeps you from spinning your wheels, wondering what to do. It’s simple. Just do the mission for the day, and then done. Whew!

I’ve already developed a year long plan for you, and thought it through. I’ve hit the major areas in every room in the house, thought of all the hidden and obvious clutter problem areas many of us face, and give you access to this plan so you can begin immediately!

Just think about it. If you actually decluttered every day, for the whole year, for fifteen minutes a day, you’d be able to declutter for over 90 hours! Imagine how much impact you could make in that amount of time!

You can grab your copy of the year-long calendar here. All you’ve got to do is turn to today’s date, and do the mission. Then, rinse and repeat tomorrow. Easy peasy!

But I Need Someone To Remind Me, Because I’ll Forget!

How to declutter your bedroom

I hear you! It is easy to start out with good intentions, but easy to forget to check a printed calendar daily.

First, I recommend that you post a copy of the calendar up on your refrigerator or bathroom mirror, or wherever, to remind yourself to do the daily mission.

But if it was that easy everyone would do it.

So here’s the things I do to try to help remind you:

1. Sign Up To Get Weekly Reminders Through Email Of That Week’s Daily Missions Plus That Week’s Organized Home Challenge

Everyone who subscribes to my free newsletter joins the 52 Week Organized Home Challenge, and these Declutter 365 missions.

As the names suggest, these two programs, combined, are a system to get your whole house decluttered and then organized, slowly, over the course of the year, without it feeling overwhelming.

These two systems, the Organized Home Challenges, and Declutter 365 missions, are highly intertwined and complement one another. When you do one it makes sense to do the other, and that’s how they are designed.

How this works in real life is that, for example, when we’re decluttering in the kitchen, with the Declutter 365 missions, the weekly challenge will also be organizing the kitchen.

As part of the 52 Week Organized Home Challenge you get weekly emails from me, right into your inbox, reminding you of the next week’s challenge so you don’t forget. (I’ve got over 150,000 subscribers to these emails so far!)

In those emails I also remind you what that week’s daily missions are.

Fill out the form below to join the 52 Week Organized Home Challenge so you get weekly reminders of what we’re organizing and decluttering each week and day. When you sign up now you’ll get this year’s calendar.

How to declutter your bedroom

2. Join The Declutter 365 Premium Group For Daily Mission Reminders Plus Weekly Group Coaching Session

How to declutter your bedroom

Although you can follow along with just the emails from me, plus the calendar, many people begged for more daily interaction and guidance during the missions.

You asked and so I delivered. I’ve created a closed Facebook group called Declutter 365 Premium which follows along with the Declutter 365 mission schedule I’ve created and posts each mission, daily, to help remind you of the challenges and missions, and keep you on track. In this group I also provide weekly live video sessions to discuss the week’s missions, and have a question and answer session.

3. I’m Slowly Creating 365 Declutter Mission Pages Here On The Site For You To Reference

Finally, I get that some of you may want to declutter or organize at your own pace, or in your own order that best suits your needs.

That’s why, slowly but surely, I’m taking all of the 365 missions I’ve created and making them into articles on the site.

These articles provide you with lots of resources and inspiration. They contain some or all of the following, depending on the mission discussed:

  • More in depth information and strategies for how to declutter that particular type of item, or within that room.
  • Discussion of ideas of what you can do with those items you’re decluttering, such as good places to donate, sell, and/or recycle those particular things. Many find this helpful because knowing what to do when getting rid of an item makes the process of decluttering easier.
  • Inspirational pictures from other readers who’ve taken on that mission to show their success, to fire you up, or pictures showing what they’re tackling so you don’t feel alone.

I’ve linked below to the articles that have already been written, and there are plans for even more, obviously.

So check back often as I add more and more of the missions, and start the count down to 365 declutter missions with me!

Bathroom Missions

Bedroom Missions

Make sure to also check out the kids missions, below, for more kid related bedroom missions.

Cars & Vehicles Missions

Cleaning Supplies & Scheduling Missions

Closet & Clothes Missions

Make sure to also check out the kids missions, below, for more kid related clothes and closet missions. You can see a full round up of missions to declutter your excess wardrobe in this article.

The 2022 decluttering calendar that will ensure your home is spotless in time for Christmas – from clearing the bathroom cabinets in March to tackling your wardrobe in October

  • Packaging retailer RAJA UK has shared some tips for decluttering your home
  • Research revealed 35% of Brits found decluttering their home to b therapeutic
  • Experts have revealed the mental and physical benefits of keeping a tidy house

Published: 09:28 GMT, 28 November 2021 | Updated: 18:24 GMT, 28 November 2021

From the financial burdens to the tidy up before and after the big day, the lead up to Christmas can sometimes be really stressful.

But one way to make the festive period more chilled is to be prepared.

Research by packaging retailer RAJA UK revealed that 35% of Brits found decluttering their home to be a therapeutic experience – and one that can help people feel more at easy during the chaos in December.

Here, FEMAIL has shared some tips for decluttering your home in the run-up to Christmas to make sure you’re not overwhelmed when the time comes.

How to declutter your bedroom

Packaging retailer RAJA UK has revealed your calendar to declutter before Christmas. Pictured, stock image

Take down all of your Christmas decorations and pack them into cardboard boxes so they’re organised for next year.

Dispose of your unwanted boxes and cards by recycling them. Return or donate any unwanted Christmas gifts.

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February – Get organised in the kitchen

Reorganise the kitchen by checking the expiry date on foodstuff and putting anything that is out of date in the food waste bin.

Tackle the junk drawer. Recycle old takeaway menus, find proper storage for receipts and manage other miscellaneous items.

Take an inventory of your small appliances and cooking utensils and get rid of items that you no longer need.

March – Bathroom cleanse

The costs of a cluttered home – from sleep deprivation to feelings of guilt

A cluttered home can be a massive burden on your mental health and physical health. Here are some of the costs of a messy home that you may not be aware of:

Attempting to sleep in a cluttered room can result in a higher risk of developing sleep problems, such as trouble falling asleep and waking up in the middle of the night.

Mess can lead to bad coping and avoidance strategies like excess snacking and binge-watching TV shows.

Feelings of guilt

Clutter creates feelings of guilt and embarrassment when your house isn’t clean and tidy, especially when you have guests over for Christmas.

It provides the mind with excessive stimuli, making the senses work overtime on things that are not important.

Clear out your bathroom including your medicine cabinet. Check to see if medicines are still in date and dispose of items that have expired. Store them by medicine type, such as liquids, pills and emergency first aid.

Clear out your vanity drawer by assessing if creams, make-up and bath products are still okay to use.

April – Donate or sell

Go through your closet and cut your winter wardrobe down. Pick out anything you didn’t use and donate or sell them.

If you have children, do the same for their closet. See what clothes fit them (and will still fit in the next six months).

June – Sort storage space

Go through your storage space such as a garage, shed or attic.

Sort your space into specific zones, one for household tools, sports equipment, seasonal decorations and garden supplies.

July – Get crafty

Craft items such as paints, pens and other bits can create clutter quickly. Store various craft items in cardboard storage boxes.

Sort out all of your books, boardgames and DVDs in your living room or games room.

August – Summer spruce

During the summer holidays, cull your linen cupboard. Recycle thread-bare towels, sheets, blankets and linens or donate them to your local animal shelter.

September – Tackle the home office

Take time to organise your home office space. Invest in some desk organisers, such as pen pots and filing systems for documents that you have to keep.

Cable organisers are an easy way to ensure that your desk looks tidy.

October – Store away

You’ll want to repeat the process you did in April with winter clothes. Look at the items you didn’t use and sell, donate or repurpose them.

Store away your sandals, flip-flops and other summer shoes. Get rid of the ones you won’t use next year.

November – Sort decorations

Go through the decorations that you packed away in January. Donate or sell what you won’t use.

Again, make sure you’re up to date with what is in the kitchen cabinets since you organised it in February.

December – Kick back and relax!

Pour yourself a mulled wine and enjoy all the festivities in a clutter-free house!

Piles of junk aren’t doing your physical or mental health any favors.

How to declutter your bedroom

How to declutter your bedroom

Piles of unopened mail, dirty (or, err, clean) clothes, and long-forgotten toys are some of the most common clutter culprits in any home. And while they might seem all sweet and innocent (everyone has extra stuff!) too much junk can actually be harmful to your health. Here’s why you should ditch the odds and ends that are making your home disorganized, for good:

1. It’s making you feel stressed out.

No, you’re not imagining it. According to researchers at UCLA’s Center of Everyday Lives and Families (CELF), there’s a link between high cortisol (a stress hormone) in women who own homes with a “high density of household objects.” Translation: The more stuff you have, the more stress women experience, because they associate a messy home with failure. (And may we jump in here and remind everyone to stop beating themselves up over past clutter transgressions? It’s never too late to turn your home into a place you truly love.)

2. It’s causing you to overeat — and maybe gain weight.

Sure, your stacks of papers aren’t literally adding on the pounds, but they do add stress to your life that might make you overeat, according to Peter Walsh and his book Lose the Clutter, Lose the Weight. To be fair, most of his research is anecdotal, but a panel of testers found tackling clutter with their weight loss goals effective.

How to declutter your bedroom

3. It’s why you always feel so tired.

Even if you go to bed earlier, it won’t make up for that pile of books in the corner of your rom: A Princeton University Neuroscience Institute study found that people with a cluttered home experienced increased exhaustion as a result of expanding mental energy on stress that’s caused by your messy environment. Plus, it makes it harder to focus and process information, so you have to try harder and expend more energy to do everyday tasks.

4. It negatively impacts your decision-making skills.

That same study from the Princeton University explains that the awareness and annoyance of existing clutter will wear down on your mental state, making you more likely to become frustrated — so you might make decisions differently than your normally clear head might.

5. It’s probably costing you money.

When you have a pile of both opened and unopened mail stacked sky-high, you’re more likely to lose or forget to pay a bill — and late fees are no joke. Or if you can’t find your favorite nail polish you might end up purchasing a duplicate that you didn’t need to (and only adds to your clutter problem).

How to declutter your bedroom

6. It’s fostering an environment for germs and pests.

Think about it: If you can’t see the surface of your kitchen counter, how can you wipe it clean? And if your clutter habits include leaving dirty dishes out overnight, you’re basically inviting critters like cockroaches into your home.

7. It’s the reason you’re always late.

Even though you should know to add five minutes onto your routine for the inevitable hunt for your car keys or missing shoe, you probably don’t. So as a result, your version of on-time is always several minutes later than the rest of the world’s (something we’re sure your friends just love).

How to declutter your bedroom

8. It’s physically dangerous (watch your step!).

How many times have you stumbled over your sneakers? Or slipped on a sock left on your wood floors? Piles of items strewn haphazardly around your home will inevitably lead to accidents. Don’t risk a twisted ankle on junk you don’t need.

If your allergies act up when you’re at home, your bedroom is probably one of your problem areas.

It’s key to make the room less cozy to mold, dust mites, and other allergens that make you sneeze and sniffle.

1. Kick Dust Mites Out of Bed

These microscopic bugs can trigger allergies and asthma. They can often be found living in your bedding.

You can take some steps to get rid of them:

  • Put dust-mite-proof covers on pillows, comforters, mattresses, and box springs.
  • Wash your blankets, sheets, and pillowcases every week in water that is at least 130 F. Dry everything in a hot dryer.

2. Vacuum Regularly

Carpet is a popular place for dust mites. Consider replacing it in your bedroom with hardwood floors or linoleum and washable area rugs.

If you must have carpet in your bedroom:

  • Choose the low-nap or low-pile kind, which holds fewer allergens.
  • Clean it using a vacuum with a HEPA filter and a double bag every week. Wear a dust mask while you vacuum so you don’t inhale dust that floats up into the air.
  • Do housework during the day, not the evening, so dust has a couple of hours to settle before you go to sleep.

3. Use Light and Breezy Window Treatments

Say goodbye to dust catchers like blinds and heavy, dry-clean-only drapes. Try washable curtains and roller shades, instead.

Wipe window frames and glass regularly to prevent mold and mildew. Both can trigger upper respiratory symptoms if you have allergies or asthma.

4. Declutter Your Bedroom

Keep things simple to breathe better. Cut back on knickknacks and fabric. The less upholstery in the room, the better.

Move books, magazines, and decorative items to another room, so you can dust less often.

Don’t store things under your bed, and don’t leave dirty clothes on the floor.

5. Protect Bedroom Air

Dust mites and mold like a warm, damp room, but you probably don’t.

  • When it’s warm, use your air conditioner, even if you’re tempted by the outdoor breeze.
  • If you live in a sweaty-weather climate, use a dehumidifier to keep humidity at 30% to 50%.
  • Turn down the heat or turn up the AC. Dust mites can’t breed as well at temperatures below 77 F.
  • Check carpeting for signs of mold or mildew, especially near windows. If you notice condensation on windows or window frames, try to find the cause. Find out how to deal with it so it doesn’t lead to mold.
  • Don’t leave damp or sweaty clothes in the hamper. That’s a perfect breeding ground for mold. Empty the hamper every day.

You may want to try an air-filtration system that uses a small-particle or HEPA filter to keep the air in your bedroom cleaner. These filters work in central air conditioning and heating systems and in portable AC units.

6. Make Your Bedroom a Pet-Free Zone

Your pets may love to snuggle with you. But dander, saliva, and pee from furry animals can carry allergens. Plus, they can track in mold and pollen from outside. Ideally, your dog or cat should sleep somewhere else. If not, do your best to reduce dander. For example, vacuum more often.

7. Ban Roaches

These scurrying insects might make an appearance no matter where you live — and they leave behind tiny droppings that can bring on symptoms for people with asthma, especially children.

To keep roaches outside of your home:

  • Seal cracks and crevices.
  • Fix leaks in pipes and faucets.
  • Try not to leave wet towels on the floor. Roaches thrive on water.
  • Crumbs are a lure for cockroaches. Make bedrooms no-food zones.
  • Store food in tightly sealed containers.
  • Keep your dishes clean.
  • Hire an exterminator if you need to.

Show Sources

American Academy of Allergy, Asthma and Immunology (AAAAI.org): “Tips to Remember: Indoor Allergens,” “Humidifiers and Indoor Allergies,” “Allergy Statistics,” “How to Help Your Allergies and Asthma.”

CDC: “Facts About Mold and Dampness.”

MedlinePlus: “Indoor Allergies Common in Winter.”

Mayo Foundation for Medical Education and Research: “Allergy-Proof Your House.”

American College of Asthma, Allergy and Immunology: “Dust Mite Allergy: Tips for Reducing House Dust Allergies.”

Allergy & Asthma Network: “Sleep Matters: Getting a Good Night’s Sleep with Asthma and Allergies.”

Harvard Medical School, Women’s Health Watch: “What To Do About Sinusitis.”

Tammemagi, C. Archives of Otolaryngology – Head & Neck Surgery, 2010.

Nemours Foundation: “Sinusitis.”

Arroyave, W. Annals of Allergies, Asthma & Immunology, March 2014.

KidsHealth.org: “All about allergies.”

Allergy & Asthma Network Mothers of Asthmatics: “Indoor AIRepair at Home.”

How to declutter your bedroom

Why is it that the older we get, the more stuff we seem to accumulate? And not only that, but we tend to feel an unnecessary attachment toward everything. From your daughter’s science fair project to a concert autograph from your early twenties, it’s always hard to part ways with our possessions—despite the fact that we hardly think twice about most of them anymore. When you’ve racked up years worth of belongings that you need to get rid of, it’s hard to know how to declutter your home. That’s why we have your solution—it’s time to officially Marie Kondo your life. (Tiny houses are popular for a reason, you know!)

From bras that don’t fit to spices that expired years ago, here are 45 things it’s time to toss if you’re a woman over 40 (or you’re simply looking to take the next big step in DIY closet organization). Something doesn’t spark joy? Get rid of it! And, let’s be real here—do you actually need souvenir shot glasses from your girls trips decades ago, or those bridesmaid dresses collecting dust in the back of your closet that you swore you’d have an occasion for eventually? One word in big, bold letters: no! Those take up major space (and we have some fabulous small bedroom storage ideas for you here). Of course, there’s zero judgement for having any of this stuff on hand, but let this be a reevaluation of what you own versus what you actually need.

A deep house cleaning doesn’t have to be an overwhelming, impossible task. Use these tips to tackle each room quickly and effectively.

Even the tidiest homes can use a good deep cleaning from time to time. To avoid becoming overwhelmed when deep cleaning a house, it's helpful to break the process down into smaller, more manageable tasks. With our deep house-cleaning guide, you'll start with six basic tasks. Once you've completed those, you can move on to tackling a few room-specific chores. This whole-home cleaning checklist comes in handy before you host company or when daily clutter and messes have started to pile up. You can also follow these steps as part of your annual cleaning regimen in the spring or fall. Soon you'll have a clean and tidy home that can pass a white-glove inspection.

How to Deep Clean Your House

As you go through each room in your home, begin with these deep cleaning tips to streamline the process.

1. Declutter Before Deep Cleaning

Find a new place for (or better yet, get rid of) any visible clutter that does not belong in the room. Save the stuff behind closed doors for another day to help simplify your deep cleaning checklist. Clearing clutter makes deep cleaning easier and seeing those tidy surfaces can help boost your motivation to keep going.

2. Start High, Go Low

Tackle large, hard-to-reach surfaces in this order: ceiling, ceiling trim, ceiling light fixtures (including bulbs), walls, the rest of the trim, and baseboards. The best tool for these surfaces is a clean microfiber mop ($12, The Home Depot) or a duster with a telescoping handle ($16, Bed Bath & Beyond). Bonus: These tools are typically thin enough to get behind the sofa without moving it. Above eye-level, a spritz of water is all you need on the mop. Surfaces closer to the floor tend to build up dirt and dust, so use warm water mixed with a drop of dish soap. In bathrooms, add a splash of white vinegar to the mixture to stop mold and mildew. For spots where using a mop is awkward or inconvenient, use a microfiber cloth ($3, Target). Rinse often and wring thoroughly.

3. Deep Clean Windows

Cleaning windows is fairly simple, and the payoff is huge. First, vacuum the sills and tracks. Then spritz the window with glass cleaner ($3, Target) from top to bottom. Let the cleaner do its thing for a minute, then squeegee it off. If you wipe in one direction on inside windows and another on outside ones, it will be easier to see and fix streaks.

4. Spruce Up Window Treatments

Save yourself the trouble of taking down blinds or shades. All you really need to do is vacuum them using the brush attachment. And instead of laundering and ironing curtains, just fluff them in the dryer for a few minutes (while you wipe off the rod and rings). Then hang them right back up.

5. Remove Dust from Surfaces

Wipe all remaining hard surfaces (wood furniture, shelves, built-ins, etc.) using furniture cleaner and polish ($6, The Home Depot) and a soft cloth. For an extra-quick clean, put a clean cotton tube sock on your dominant hand to dust surfaces, moving objects out of the way with the other hand. Finally, take a lint roller to the lampshades.

6. Deep Clean the Floors

To do this right, you'll have to move the furniture, even larger pieces like beds and sofas. To make moving heavy pieces easier, place furniture slides ($7, Target) under the legs of big pieces. Then break out your vacuum's crevice tool to get at the dirt in corners and along baseboards. If you have a hard floor, clean it with a microfiber mop and the appropriate cleaner for the surface. If you have carpet, now is a good time to rent a professional-grade cleaner. (And if you have pets and/or kids, think about investing in your own.)

Elizabeth Scott, PhD is an author, workshop leader, educator, and award-winning blogger on stress management, positive psychology, relationships, and emotional wellbeing.

Rachel Goldman, PhD FTOS, is a licensed psychologist, clinical assistant professor, speaker, wellness expert specializing in eating behaviors, stress management, and health behavior change.

When looking for ways to manage stress, people often overlook one of the simplest and most effective strategies: Create a peaceful home. Because most of our days begin and end at home, having a peaceful home as your base can help you launch yourself into the world from a less-stressed place each day. (Children appreciate this, too!)

Barriers to a Peaceful Home

Because this seems like such a given, why don’t people put more focus on discovering and assembling the elements of a peaceful home? It’s a paradox that many of us experience.

Even though home is important, the need to take care of the structure and workings of our homes may not seem like as pressing of a need as others we experience day-to-day. When we’re rushing to get out the door in the morning, or collapsing on the couch after a long day, cleaning and organizing may seem like a ridiculous pursuit.

Reasons to Make Your Home Peaceful

However, when you consider the value of creating an inspiring place to wake up to, a soothing place to come home to, and a relaxing place to live, it becomes apparent that time and energy put into creating a peaceful home can translate into energy saved and stress relieved.

The Toll of Clutter

In ways many people don’t realize, clutter has hidden costs. It drains us of time, energy, and even money. Many people describe feeling disorganized or chaotic when they are living in clutter or items seem disorganized.

Fun With Friends and Family

One clutter-clearing expert, FlyLady, refers to a cluttered environment as living in CHAOS: Can’t Have Anyone Over Syndrome. We love this acronym because it’s so true—who can relax with friends and family in a messy home? Probably not you or your guests.

Because of the benefits of social support, and the stress-relieving benefits of having fun with friends, it’s even more helpful to have an environment where everyone can relax and have fun.

Energy Levels

The eastern practice of feng shui—the ancient art of placement—is gaining popularity all over the globe, as people notice that their surroundings can influence the way they feel and the energy that they have. Feng shui holds that the placement and type of objects in our surroundings can affect our energy, or chi.

Whether or not you are interested in feng shui, you have probably noticed that cluttered environments can be an energy drain—even if just because there’s so much to look at (and everything you see is a reminder of cleaning that should be done).

Maintaining an uncluttered, peaceful home can make you feel more energetic and relaxed at the same time.

5 Steps to Create a Peaceful Home

Including several peace-promoting elements in your home can make it a more soothing and enjoyable place to be. When trying to convert your home into a more peaceful space, consider the following strategies.

Pare Down, Organize, and Decorate

These are the classic activities people think of when they think of home makeovers. Getting rid of clutter can help you plug up energy drains all over your home. Organizing your things can help you to know where everything is, and have a place to put everything in your home so that clean-up goes very quickly.

Decorating, using colors and themes that truly speak to you, can help you feel relaxed and energized at the same time as you look around and take in the beauty, order, and style of your home.

Create a Space for Stress-Relief Activities

One of the challenges of maintaining stress-relieving habits is that we get busy and let other activities in our lives come first. If we build in a physical space for our stress-soothing habits, we have a physical reminder, as well as a facilitator, to help us maintain the motivation to keep these habits in our lives.

Improve Feng Shui

Many people have reaped the stress relief benefits of feng shui and swear by the practice. As you're making changes to create a peaceful home environment, factoring in a little feng shui (or a lot) can bring long-term benefits, as once you incorporate the stress-relieving elements of feng shui, you don't have to constantly maintain most of the changes—they're just part of your decor.

Try Aromatherapy

Because aromatherapy is getting a lot of buzz these days, it’s easy to find products that provide a wonderful, soothing scent for a room. And the hype isn’t unwarranted; aromatherapy research shows that there are real stress-relief benefits to its use. Aromatherapy can help create a peaceful home that subtly offers passive stress relief, making it a recommended element of a peaceful home.

Play Music

Music is another of those wonderful stress relievers that, like aromatherapy, offers passive stress relief and can energize or relax you (depending on the type you use). It can offer benefits that are better than you might imagine. Incorporating music into the background can help contribute to a peaceful home environment—it’s a great way to relieve the stress of those you’re with, and relieve your own stress at the same time, without much effort.