THINGS TO DECLUTTER IN OCTOBER
If you’re looking for some decluttering projects this Autumn, then check out this handy list of things to declutter in October. There are big and small daily projects to clear the clutter from your home, declutter your time, get organised and generally simplify your home and life.
HOW TO MAKE DECLUTTERING EASIER
Decluttering your home can sometimes feel overwhelming, especially if you have a lot of stuff, don’t have much time, or just don’t know where to start. It’s common to feel daunted, I felt like that too and it’s a common obstacle that can stop us in our tracks.
One of the best ways to start decluttering is to break it down into small, simple decluttering projects. Not only is this helpful when you want to declutter but don’t have time, but it FEELS easier… and when something feels easier, we’re much more likely to do it!
In this article I’m sharing 30 decluttering projects for October. Not only will your home have less clutter but it gives you the opportunity to build up a decluttering habit, step-by-step, day-by-day.
A decluttering habit is really important for a clutter-free home and life because it will help you get used to decluttering and dealing with your clutter as part of your regular everyday routine.
Clutter will always creep back into your home so decluttering habits and strategies to tackle that clutter every day will be key to keeping your home clutter-free, way beyond the initial decluttering.
So, if you’d like to take part in this month’s decluttering challenge and get rid of 30 unwanted items from your home and life, keep reading!
CLUTTER ISN’T JUST THE PHYSICAL STUFF IN YOUR HOME
One quick point before we start, I also wanted to remind you that clutter isn’t just the physical stuff taking up space in your home. It could be clutter in your schedule, your mind, even your relationships. Clutter is anything that doesn’t support you, add value, have purpose or that you don’t appreciate, not just in your home but your life generally.
What you think clutters your life might be different to what I think clutters mine, but understanding what clutter means to you, is the key to making sure your clutter stays away.
The list below contains some ideas for clearing clutter from your home, but also some of the intangible and invisible clutter from your life. I hope they give you some suggestions and food for thought as you declutter and simplify your own life!
IF YOU GET STUCK
If you find one of the projects particularly difficult, don’t give up. I’ve chosen a varied list of things to declutter in October which might be cluttering your home and life, but if you’d like to swap one or two things out for something else that’s cluttering YOUR life, then feel free.
As I said, the aim is to help you declutter, little by little, and build up that decluttering habit. Exactly what you throw out is up to you, these are just some ideas.
30 THINGS TO DECLUTTER IN OCTOBER
Try these small simplifying projects and 30 things to declutter in October. Declutter your home, your schedule and life one day at a time.
1. Your plans for Christmas
Make Christmas a little simpler and more magical for both you and the kids by planning ahead and getting organised. Sort through your Christmas decorations, any gift wrap or cards you might want to use and any gifts that you’ve bought already in preparation for this year. Make a list of anything you need to buy and get rid of what you don’t want to keep (donate, recycle or throw).
2. Relationships that don’t truly support you
Identify which relationships are important to you, add value to your life and really mean something to you. Build and strengthen these and find ways to filter out the relationships that aren’t based on mutual support, trust and respect. Always be kind and there for others but be mindful that you don’t have to be the one that always gives out if you seldom receive anything in return.
3. Things that make you unhappy
Find ways to be happier, put a smile on your face and on those around you! If you find it difficult to decide what makes you happy, try thinking about it the other way around. Make a list of 5 things that make you UNhappy. Can you do anything to remove, avoid or reduce them?
4. Double-booking yourself
Stop running around because time is tight. Declutter your calendar so you have more wiggle room and more free time. Learn to say no (and be comfortable with it). Postpone something until you have more time.
5. Keyrings you don’t need
A mini decluttering project of its own. Whilst you’re at it (and if you have time), check whether you still need all the keys too! Clutter doesn’t have to be big or expensive. Little things contribute to the clutter in our life too.
6. Your kitchen junk drawer
We all have one of these although it might not be a drawer and it might not be in your kitchen. It’s a catch-all place where you dump stuff that needs sorting out from time to time. Let’s sort it this month!
7. The storage under your bed
Out of season clothing, spare bedding, extra blankets. Are they lurking under your bed? Work out what you need to keep and donate/throw/recycle the rest. Just because you can’t see the clutter under your bed doesn’t mean it isn’t there. Same goes for any other cupboards, drawers or spaces where your clutter might be lurking unseen!
8. Camping equipment
Are you going to use it again? Is it in full working order, looked after and carefully stored? If you’re going to use it and enjoy using it (albeit not very often) then keep it. If you don’t intend to camp again and don’t enjoy it, then do you really want it cluttering up your space and getting old, dusty and maybe damaged? This is an example of where clutter means different things to different people. And, if you don’t have camping equipment, maybe focus on decluttering something else in your home that’s taking up space but you don’t use very often. Such as…
9. Tools you don’t use
If you don’t know how to use them, have never used them or they’re broken, do you really need to keep them? Can you get them repaired to donate or sell? Maybe somebody could make more use of them than you? Here are some tips on what to do with unwanted stuff after you’ve decluttered it.
10. Paintbrushes and decorating supplies
Check for old paint that’s gone off, paintbrushes that are past their best and any other materials that you don’t use. Sometimes we keep things because we’re definitely going to use them but they don’t stand the test of time. Make a point of checking the inventory in your home regularly to make sure it’s not unusable or expired. This could include food, art and craft materials, make-up, medicines. Can you think of anything else?
11. Things that you don’t really need and could give to charity
Somebody else could put them to good use, rather than them just taking up space stuffed in your cupboards. Donating items to charity is a great way to reduce some of the feelings of guilt we attach to decluttering. It’s not just a question of ‘getting rid’ of things, it’s about gifting them to someone who could really enjoy or make use of them.
12. Unwanted gifts
Just because someone gave it to you, doesn’t mean you have to keep it. Pass on to a friend, recycle or donate instead. Try these tips on how to deal with gifts as a minimalist (or just someone who prefers less clutter!).
13. Expired coupons and vouchers
If they’ve expired, they’re probably not much use anyway! If you’ve looked through your purse, bag or wallet to find these coupons, why not declutter the rest of your purse, bag or wallet now too?
14. Anything that you haven’t worn in a year or two
No need to clutter up your space with things you’re not likely to wear. There could be a few exceptions here such as maternity clothes, extreme weather pieces or items for special occasions. However, in terms of everyday clothes that you wear regularly, have a look through and see if there’s anything you haven’t worn. What’s the reason? Is it uncomfortable, too tight, itchy? Is that reason likely to change so you’d like to wear it and if not, do you really need to keep it?
15. Pet supplies
Check for out-of-date food and medicines. Our pets can clutter our homes just as we do!
16. Seasonal clothes that could be put in storage
Coats when it’s hot outside, shorts when it’s freezing? Go through your seasonal clothes before you put them away until the weather changes. If you have an alternative storage space, you could put seasonal clothes in there as you don’t need excess items cluttering your closet. Speaking of which, let’s look at your closet in more detail next…
17. Your wardrobe
Take a look on the top of the wardrobe and look out for any clutter and stuff that you’ve put up there. Can you see it? Maybe you’d forgotten about it? It’s still there even if it’s out of sight! Take a few moments to pull it out, sort through for stuff to donate and rehome what you’d like to keep if you can find somewhere more appropriate to store it. Once the top of your wardrobe is done, maybe take a look inside your wardrobe and check for stuff that’s been squished in there but that doesn’t belong. Wardrobes are for pieces of clothing that go on your body, not random items of clutter that you don’t know where else to put!
18. Your make-up
The changing seasons, light, temperatures and colours of nature around you make October the perfect time to review your make-up. Is there anything that you need more or less of this season? The make-up you wear in Autumn might be different to what you wore in Summer. Clean your brushes, throw away any stale make-up and give everything a tidy and sort to make it easier to get ready in the mornings.
19. Old school reports for your kids
Old school reports for the kids which you can scan and save electronically. Same goes for other important documents, paperwork and sentimental items the kids created. Try these tips on how to deal with sentimental clutter.
20. Tax records that you no longer need
Check how long you need to keep these before you dispose of them though! Remember to always get rid of paperwork securely by shredding any personal or identifiable data. It may take a little longer to destroy it safely but it could avoid much more serious problems later on if someone else was to obtain your details and use them wrongfully. Decluttering paperwork can often take longer than we expect so allow yourself some extra time here.
Identify how much you owe and come up with a plan for paying it off at a rate you can afford. If you have credit cards, use them wisely. There are many sources of support if you’re struggling with debt so don’t be afraid to reach out for help if you can’t handle it on your own.
22. Memberships and subscriptions
If you use your memberships and subscriptions then keep and enjoy them. If not, cancel them and spend or save the money in a more useful way.
23. Home decor
Accessories that we choose to decorate our home can sometimes just make our home feel cluttered and crowded. Take a walk around your home now. As you go into each room, look at it objectively and see how it looks and feels. Are there too many ornaments, pictures, throws and cushions or does it feel about right? Let your favourite items stand out by removing the extras that you don’t really love to look at. You might be surprised about the things that make your home still look cluttered – decor items are one of them!
24. Your time
Declutter your time like you declutter your stuff. Give yourself plenty of free time, don’t overbook or overstretch yourself and keep your days as simple as possible. Try this free workbook to help you simplify your days.
25. Items you bought which seemed a good idea at the time
Items you bought which seemed a good idea at the time but in reality you never use. Think about what you could have done with the money and shop more mindfully in the future.
26. Your thoughts
Your mind can be cluttered by so many thoughts – good and bad. Try regular journaling to help you explore how you’re thinking and feeling and come up with an action plan to deal with any stresses and strains.
27. Information that you can find on the internet if you need it
The internet is a treasure trove of information. You can find most things you need on there at the click of a button. Take a look at what instruction manuals, maps or reference books you have lying around your home. Can you find the information on the internet quickly and easily if you need it?
28. Time looking mindlessly at social media
Limit your time looking into the lives of others and focus your time and energy on working on your own life! Social media has its place but just be mindful when it becomes more than that. Here are some tips on using social media mindfully.
29. Hobby supplies you no longer enjoy
Declutter what you don’t use and don’t enjoy any more. Here are some tips on how to declutter art and craft supplies for more creativity and joy!
30. Things that waste time
Use your time wisely and be mindful of how you spend your days. Although you don’t need to be productive every minute of every day, your time is precious so invest it with care.
YOUR NEXT STEP…
“The trees are about to show us how lovely it is to let things go.” (Unknown)
I hope you enjoyed this list of things to declutter in October. If you’d like to carry on decluttering your home, your time and your life, check out my FREE Declutter Starter Kit. It’s packed with helpful decluttering tips, projects and advice to get you started.