Introduction: Declutter a Room (Part 1)

I have a room that should be a sauna. It has been a junk magnet though the rest of the house is quite neat. It's winter soon here in Australia and I'd really like to use the sauna.

This instructable will show the first stage of the declutter and some methods I will use to complete the room.

This is Part 1. Look out for the next parts in coming weeks.

I have used this room to store things I might sell online and also store packaging that comes into the house. The room also has overflow of bulk groceries.

The first thing I do is make the decision that having a sauna is my priority. I also recognise that I don't have the time or inclination to sell a lot of stuff online so I'll just keep some to sell and put a firm time limit on the things I plan to sell. I decide that if I have not listed by the end of June then they will go out to charity. I really don't need this stuff sitting here and being constantly in the back of my mind.

The timer is useful as I will be getting up 30 minutes early each day to get this sorted. I'm pretty busy with work and study and I just want this stuff gone.

The boxes help keep me in one area focused on the task instead of getting distracted.

The cleaning items are useful because clutter is yukky and dusty.


1. A timer

2. Some boxes to sort the items that can be labelled:

  • rubbish
  • recycle
  • donation
  • transit

You may need additional boxes as I did with different classifications depending on what you want to do with things:

  • sell
  • soft plastic recycle

3. Some cleaning items. A cloth and water and a broom or mop.

Step 1: Roll Up Your Sleeves. This Is Serious.

Let's make some room to work.

I remove the boxes on the floor so I can enter the room. I have put them aside as I need to go through them too.

I'm keen to get a bench clear so that I have somewhere to sort the stuff.

I've mopped the floor too.

Step 2: Get the Sorting Boxes

I setup the sorting boxes just outside the room as it's pretty cramped in here.

I have a box for recycling, a soft plastics box, a rubbish bin and a box that I'm putting things I will keep in.

(This is a bit of a spoiler as I'd already started when I took the photo)

Step 3: Clearing Left to Right.

I decide to start on the left and work my way around the room.

I'm going from top to bottom and left to right.

I don't want to get distracted so I make sure to not jump from place to place and only deal with what is in front of me.

I decide that I have more than enough packaging and boxes so I will keep a few boxes and some bubble wrap.

I flatten the excess boxes and put the plastic in recycle.

When I clear this area I will have a bench to start sorting stuff on.

Step 4: A Clear Bench

The bench is finally clear.

I have filled the recycling bin a number of times and had to take outside to the bin. I have even filled the bin outside.

I have some items in the donations box and the selling box and in the transit box.

The transit box is good because it stops me wandering around the house and getting distracted.

Handy hint: If you find this sort of work dull then you can play music...loud.

Step 5: Sorting on the Bench

I empty two boxes of stuff onto the bench.

I work my way across the bench from left to right and make a quick decision about each item.

They go into the boxes.

I'm happy because I let go of a lot of stuff to charity.

There is some stuff I decide I will sell but I give myself a deadline of 30 June to list it or it goes out.

Step 6: I Have Finished for the Morning

I empty all the boxes.

I take the transit box around the house, putting things where they belong.

I put the donations in my car.

I put the recycling and rubbish in the bins.

I keep some packaging for the items I will sell.

I still have my bench for tomorrow morning's session.

I wash my hands and then have my morning shower to get the grime off.

Step 7: Next Steps

I will be moving down and dealing with the boxes below the bench.

Stay tuned.

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