What does this mean?  Does it sound overwhelming?

Decluttering means: a common organizational practice to remove clutter from a room, an area, etc..

These words are becoming more common as we age; we feel we need to change something in our lives to make it easier.  Decluttering is a quick and easy solution as you start small.  For example: You can clear a counter or table of paper.  Or you can pick a room to organize and remove items you no longer use.  Delegating it to a certain place or recycling it, if it’s not required.  

But..where do you start?  It can be refreshing and relaxing to have a tidy, neater space.  Visualize the space you’re working on.  Start decluttering by taking 5 minutes to clean a counter in the kitchen, or a shelf (1 shelf), a drawer or a closet.  If you touch it, deal with it.  Delegate a new place for it or dispose of it.  Ask yourself this question.  When did you last use it?  Is it useful, how many times have you used it in the last 6 months?  Papers have a way of building up.  Put all newspapers, magazines or books in one place.  Put your mail or bills in one place.  Use this place regularly and ensure family members know where to put it as well.  Review the pile regularly and recycle what you have read or dealt with.  If you haven’t read the newspaper in a week, or the monthly magazine subscriptions, then share, donate or recycle it.   Does the kitchen counter have too many appliances on it?  Can it be put in a cupboard if you don’t use it daily?  Another way to declutter is to pick 5 things up and find a home for it them.  These should be things that you actually use, but that you just seem to put anywhere, because they don’t have good places.   Stop & take a couple of minutes to think of a good place to put it them.  In your clothes closet, keep only that seasons clothes there and put the other season’s clothes in a box.  When did you last wear that sweater?  Does it fit? Is it in good repair? Do you like the style, cut or even color?  If not, donate it.  Unworn clothes just take up space and someone else may be able to wear it and enjoy the piece.  Clear out your medicine cabinet. If you don’t have one spot for medicines, create one now. Go through everything for the outdated medicines, the stuff you’ll never use again, the dirty-looking bandages, makeup, the creams or ointments that you’ve found you’re allergic to, or even outdated.  Yes, even makeup, creams & ointments become outdated!

These are just a few ways to declutter.  Try to do this regularly and pretty soon all will be in order, then you can enjoy the cleaner, fresher look.

A weekly feature for Lumby, Cherryville, and area seniors. For more information about any of the following please contact Colleen or Jenny at (250) 547-8866 Whitevalley Community Resource Centre Office (250) 547-8866. Funding support provided by Interior Health, the Province of British Columbia (Community Gaming), United Way Southern Interior and United Way Lower Mainland.