While it may be tempting to scratch the decluttering task from your to-do list and simply cart all that extra gear to your new home, this is a major mistake! Here we introduce you to six practical tips for decluttering before a move.
When preparing for a move, the task of decluttering can tip you over into a state of overwhelm. You already have so much on your plate – how are you supposed to deal with all the emotional baggage tied up in your accumulated possessions?
Even if you work with the best removalist Melbourne has to offer, you’ll probably still enjoy a smooth transition to your new home. However, you’ll be dragging a whole bunch of unnecessary chaos and clutter with you.
Thankfully, if you start early and get strategic, you can avoid this common moving mistake. Work through each tactic, and you’ll embark on this new journey with a clean slate.
#1 – Give yourself more time than you think you need
The key to successful decluttering is to begin early. Settle on a date that you think will give you enough time, then jump back a week or two on the calendar – that’s when you should start. This way, you’ll give yourself time to prioritise items based on their significance and utility. Importantly, you’ll also have the space needed to work through step two, which can be surprisingly taxing.
#2 – Take sentimental value seriously
You may not even realise you’re holding onto them, but sentimental items can pose one of the biggest decluttering challenges. If you find yourself making excuses for every item and convincing yourself that it has to stay, stop and take a breath.
It certainly is important to hold onto meaningful keepsakes, but it’s equally crucial to evaluate their significance from an objective mindset. If an item no longer brings you joy or serves a practical purpose, consider photographing it so you have a digital record (more on this in point five) and then letting it go.
#3 – Prioritise practicality
Before giving an item the final thumbs up or thumbs down, consider how it would function in the new space. Will it fit in with the design aesthetic? Will it serve a purpose? You may find that many items you relied on in your old home won’t be needed in your new space. For example, if your new home has a range of built-in lights with dimmer switches, you may not need to lug along your old lamps. Generally speaking, if an item is redundant or a poor fit for your new place, it’s probably time to part ways with it.
#4 – Try the three-box method
Create three boxes marked “keep,” “donation,” and “disposal.” Categorise each item into one of these boxes to simplify the process and ensure you’re making intentional decisions each step of the way.
#5 – Digitise as much as possible
From keepsakes to paperwork, anything that can be digitised should be digitised. Scan old documents, take pictures of old gifts, and then dispose of the physical versions. Just be sure to shred things like bills, receipts, and identifying documents.
#6 – Avoid snap decisions
Decluttering is a mindfulness exercise that requires time and patience. Avoid the temptation to rush it, as this could lead to snap decisions that you might regret. Take breaks, assess your three boxes, and give yourself the space to make conscious choices that align with your new life direction.
Decluttering may be tougher than you anticipated. However, if you embrace it as an opportunity to let go of the past, then you can step into the next chapter of your life with a genuinely clean slate.