Reply To: Cleaning an impossible, beyond cluttered home

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Hi, Lyxi,

I’m no expert on this. I am sharing from my own experience. I suggest you start with an area you will find easiest to tackle. You can’t clean if there is a lot of clutter. I de-clutter by sorting things. I sort into categories: keep, maybe (maybe=keep for now), and toss (throw away right then or set aside to donate). I pile all the ‘keep’ things into laundry baskets according to the room where they belong, and I take them there. That de-cluttering lets me clean the first area more easily. I do this same thing room by room. Sounds simple, but it is hard to keep up the enthusiasm and energy. I only do as much as I can stand in each cleaning session.

I find the room where I’m taking a laundry basket may be very cluttered, and I get overwhelmed if I start cleaning out drawers and cabinets to make room for the things I carried there. I temporarily leave the laundry basket and make space some later time, using the same strategy of sorting things into keep, maybe, and toss.

If some of your clutter is dirty clothes or dirty dishes, and you are not 100% sure they are dirty, don’t waste time trying to figure it out. Count them as dirty. I have other family members who pile things on the kitchen counters. I get rid of a few things as I can easily, then keep at it little by little. In the refrigerator, I quickly go through and throw away things that are obviously old, same with the pantry. I don’t go crazy looking at every single thing.

If the mess is really, really bad, it may help to take a quick walk around first with a big trash bag and grab and discard only the ‘toss’ things. The reduction in mess may encourage you to keep going.

Please share how you make out.

All the best,