Decluttering your entire home can take a while. If you're pressed for time, but still want to give a room a quick tidying up, the speed decluttering game can help keep the mess at bay.
Photo by eyeliam.
As Erin Boyle at Food52 explains, decluttering doesn't have to be an all or nothing proposition. It can be like speed dating, where you get rid of the stuff you know you don't want first, then take a little time to decide whether you're ready for a long-term relationship with the rest of it. Boyle suggests you grab a timer, set it for 20 minutes, and pick a room you want to declutter:
Stand in the middle of the room and spend ten minutes identifying the things within view that are more trash than treasure. These might be things that are literally expendable: catalogues and junk mail and empty bottles (why?!). Trash might also be things that are already gone in the practical sense, but still lingering around... valueless to you and in need of removal. At the end of ten minutes, you'll easily have a pile of things... Make the one pile three: things to throw away, to recycle, and to give away. Spend another five minutes packing up your piles and making a plan for getting them out the door.
Timing yourself forces you to make quick decisions about what you want to keep around. It also forces you to finally acknowledge the feelings you've been harboring for some items. You probably already know what junk you've been keeping around, but speed decluttering gives you a starting point for actually addressing it.