10 Simple Questions to Ask Yourself When Clearing Clutter

Getting rid of unwanted clutter in one’s home can be a daunting process. To keep the process from feeling overwhelming, I have developed a list of 10 simple questions which I use to help me decide whether to keep or release an item. I hope you will find this list helpful, too:

  1. Do I love this item?
  2. Do I believe this item to be beautiful?
  3. Would I replace this item if it were lost or stolen?
  4. Would I pay extra to insure this item (or pay any money to insure it at all)?
  5. If I were moving to a much smaller living space, would I haul this item with me?
  6. Is this item in perfect working condition and, if not, am I willing to do what is necessary to fix it (in the next 7 days)?
  7. Does this item reflect my current interests/size/reality?
  8. Could I take a digital photo of this item and keep the photo instead of the item?
  9. Is storing/cleaning/caring for this item adding to the quality of my life?
  10. Do I feel energized and uplifted when I look at this item?

So, what sorting questions do you ask yourself when you are in the midst of de-cluttering?

pacific rock

Print Friendly, PDF & Email
Be Sociable, Share!

12 Responses to 10 Simple Questions to Ask Yourself When Clearing Clutter

  1. i just printed off the list and will post in my closet, now i just have to set aside some time. i have been feeling the need to clear the house and read your blog, thanks to a friend who sent it. i think i will start with the smallest space, meaning a drawer in my bathroom……..thanks for the motivation:)

  2. i just printed off the list and will post in my closet, now i just have to set aside some time. i have been feeling the need to clear the house and read your blog, thanks to a friend who sent it. i think i will start with the smallest space, meaning a drawer in my bathroom……..thanks for the motivation:)

  3. Avatar christianna
    christianna says:

    Hi Lisa,

    I’m so glad you will be using the list! Starting with a small space, such as a bathroom drawer, is an excellent way to begin. It’s much less overwhelming and you get an immediate sense of accomplishment. Please feel free to check back and let me know how it goes.

    And my thanks to your friend for referring you to my blog πŸ™‚

  4. Avatar christianna
    christianna says:

    Hi Lisa,

    I’m so glad you will be using the list! Starting with a small space, such as a bathroom drawer, is an excellent way to begin. It’s much less overwhelming and you get an immediate sense of accomplishment. Please feel free to check back and let me know how it goes.

    And my thanks to your friend for referring you to my blog πŸ™‚

  5. Do you know something? I’m printing this list and will keep it handy because I have to do a “clutter clearing” anytime soon. πŸ™‚

  6. Do you know something? I’m printing this list and will keep it handy because I have to do a “clutter clearing” anytime soon. πŸ™‚

  7. Avatar christianna
    christianna says:

    Hi Miguel,

    I hope the list will be helpful to you πŸ™‚

    Thank you for visiting and leaving a comment!

  8. Avatar christianna
    christianna says:

    Hi Miguel,

    I hope the list will be helpful to you πŸ™‚

    Thank you for visiting and leaving a comment!

  9. I am keeping this list to help my mom over the phone when she decides whether or not to throw an item away. I'm sure it'll be more successful than me just snapping at her saying “just throw it away”.

  10. Vicky, that's so great that you're helping your mom de-clutter over the phone! I'd never thought about long-distance de-cluttering before. I hope the list proves to be helpful πŸ™‚

  11. Avatar 40winks
    40winks says:

    What a wonderful list. Thanks.

  12. Avatar JST Books
    JST Books says:

    A man who recently took part in a 4-week series of Clear Your Clutter classes taught by Annette Kurtz in Tokyo heard this advice and went for it in a big way. Starting with his home and then moving to outside storage like organize your garage areas such as the one pictured here, he took ‘before’ and ‘after’ shots of everything he did.