I am admittedly a pretty messy person. I persistently have stacks of items around my office, and sometimes my home that I plan to get to “later” however, as my boyfriend can tell you, that later more often than not never comes. Which is why I recommend scheduling it.
Rather than “spring cleaning,” schedule a quarterly (or perhaps monthly) “Purge Day” when you force yourself to go through your spaces and remove things you’re no longer using, deal with those “later” piles, and give everything a proper space.
For my office, which tends to get littered with old mail, boxes from packages I’ve received, and books and other things I plan passing along to friends, a monthly purge day makes the most sense. I always use the first day of the month as my day, simply because it’s the easiest to remember, and I go through my office and make sure everything is organised and that things that need to get returned have gotten returned and things that need to hit the trash have made their way there.
For instance, I might go ahead and pass along books I’ve finished to friends, or put my old camera on eBay now that I’ve purchased an upgrade. That kind of stuff.
Our bedroom on the other hand only needs a quarterly purge date. Every 3-4 months I go through my closet and donate those clothing items I don’t think I’ll wear anymore and toss things that have reached their expiration date.
You can do the same with any area of your home that tends to get overrun over time with too much stuff.
The idea here is to set a “purge” time considerably before things get out of control. When you’re cleaning and organising the mess (and getting rid of stuff) monthly rather than yearly, those purge boxes are a lot smaller and the whole experience is considerably less overwhelming.
The scheduling part is also pretty key. I technically had this idea for years, but only really started doing it when I literally put it on my calendar monthly and forced myself to make it happen.
Trust me, doing this broken up rather than all at once when everything has gotten out of control is worth its weight in gold.