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  • Writer's pictureHeatherAnne Norbury

Start Your Decluttering Journey: Reasons Why You Haven't and Solutions

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Clutter is a common issue that many people struggle with. Whether it's a messy closet, overflowing drawers, or a cluttered living space, clutter's physical and mental weight can be overwhelming. While decluttering seems logical, why do so many of us put off this task? We will explore five common reasons you haven't started decluttering yet and provide practical tips to help you overcome them.


One of the primary reasons people avoid decluttering is good old-fashioned procrastination. It's easy to convince yourself that you'll tackle the clutter "someday." However, this delay only perpetuates the problem and prevents you from experiencing the benefits of a clutter-free environment. To overcome procrastination, start small. Set aside 15 minutes a day to declutter a specific area. By breaking the task into manageable chunks, you'll gradually make progress and build momentum. Don’t have 15 minutes? Try 5. Or declutter just one item. The point is to strengthen your decluttering muscle, and consistent action, no matter how small, is one of the best ways to do that.

Attachment to Possessions

We often form emotional attachments to our possessions, making it difficult to let them go. Sentimental items, gifts, or things we believe might be helpful someday can accumulate and contribute to clutter. To overcome this, work on shifting your mindset around stuff. Ask yourself if an item truly brings you joy or serves a practical purpose. If not, consider donating, selling, or giving it to someone who might appreciate it more.


The mere thought of tackling a cluttered space can feel overwhelming, leading to inaction. However, remember that decluttering doesn't have to be an all-or-nothing endeavor. Break it down into smaller, manageable tasks. Start with a single room or even a single drawer. Focusing on one area at a time will prevent overwhelm and create a sense of accomplishment. Your highest-use flat surface, like the dining table or kitchen counter, is a great place to start. You see immediate and useful results that can motivate you to keep going.

Lack of Time

Many people cite a lack of time as a reason for not starting the decluttering process. While it's true that decluttering takes time, it's crucial to prioritize and make it a part of your routine. Schedule decluttering sessions on your calendar, even if it's just 30 minutes a week. By treating it as a non-negotiable appointment, you'll gradually chip away at the clutter and reclaim your space.

Fear of Making Decisions

Decluttering often requires deciding what to keep and what to let go of. This decision-making process can be intimidating and lead to indecision. To overcome this fear, establish clear guidelines for yourself. For example, if you haven't used an item in the past year, it's likely time to part ways with it. Additionally, consider enlisting the help of a friend or family member who can provide an objective perspective and emotional support during the process.

Decluttering your living space can profoundly impact your physical and mental well-being. By identifying and addressing why you haven't started decluttering yet, you can overcome the barriers holding you back. Remember, decluttering doesn't have to be a daunting task. Take small steps, stay focused, and celebrate your progress. Embrace the freedom and clarity that comes with a clutter-free environment, and create a space that truly reflects the life you want to live.

If you ever need extra guidance and support on your decluttering journey, I'm here for you! Join the Decluttering Community, a private Facebook group I host. The group is for anyone looking for motivation and guidance to reduce the clutter in their homes. You will find friendly support and advice from me and others on the same journey.

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