Too Much Clutter Can Make it Hard to Breathe


Walk into any room that is packed with clutter and it can stop you in your tracks.  It can leave you feeling overwhelmed, frozen and like you can’t breathe. As a professional organizer, I see it all the time. I work with busy people who have accumulated too much stuff and now they can’t use or enjoy their home comfortably for relaxing, entertaining, meal prep or work.

There are many reasons that clutter accumulates. A big factor is when people don’t make decisions on a regular basis about what to keep and what to part with. It’s important to keep a balance in our homes for what stays and what leaves. There are so many opportunities to keep bringing more in when we find good deals, holidays, gifts and something we just can’t pass up at a garage sale. But you have to let some things go too or, before you know it, your closets, shelves and garage will be full.

 How do you declutter so you can breathe again? Here are six easy strategies to help you keep a balance and breathe in your home.

  • Think hard before you even let new items in the door. If you’re standing in the store with something in your hand, think about where you’re going to put it, how you’re going to use it and whether you really need it?  If you can’t answer the questions, it may be a good time to pass it up.
  • If something is broken and your intentions were to fix it, then fix it, take it in to have it fixed or let it go. Don’t store a bunch of broken items in your space.
  • Your home is valuable real estate. Honor it by only keeping items that add happiness and value in your home and your life.
  • Keep a donation bag or box handy at all times to toss donations in as you come across them. On a regular basis, put it in your car and drop it off. What you aren’t using will help someone else.
  • Feel good about parting with items you aren’t using by giving them to a worthy charity. It’s a win/win when you help someone else.
  • Part with duplicates if you have too much stuff and not enough space. How many do you really need and can you really use at one time?

Clutter can be such a source of stress in our lives, so I want you to declutter today to relieve stress and breathe easy!

Courtesy of my Efficient Organization column in the Lake Stevens Ledger.

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