Fall Clutter Busting: Kitchen Cabinets

I'm going to focus the next few weeks of blog posts on how to clutter bust your living space for the fall. I'll be picking one area of your home to focus on each day. I encourage to explore your home with me. The benefits are big. You'll end up feeling at home in your home!

This is how someone recently described how she felt after clutter busting: "I feel like a bubble - I've just been floating, smiling, happy and can't wait to get rid of the other things. It's like a wellspring of energy was released. Things I've wanted to do but haven't had the energy to do because of the sadness I carried are now happening - simple things like going to a museum, cooking again, etc."

Today I'd like to start with your kitchen cabinets. You'll be working with one at a time. Open the first cabinet and take everything out and put it in one place, either on the floor or on a empty table. It's important to take the items out of their hiding place. When we see our things in one big lump, it's either too much and we can't face it. Or we are so used to seeing the chaos that it can seem normal.

Spread the items out so that nothing is on top of or obstructing anything else. Have three trash bags next to these things. One bag is for trash. Another is recycling. The last is for donation. Think of the bags as fans on the sidelines. They are encouraging you to make decisions. They are on your side.

Pick up the first item. Ask yourself, "Am I using this glassware?" "Do I love these plates?" "Would I buy this skillet today?" "Do I no longer eat this?" "Am I done with these paper plates?" "Can I let this spice go?" It's good to be the matter-of-fact part of yourself during this process. The "yes" or "no" part of you. Your time is valuable. You're looking to separate out the things that are no longer a part of your life so you can move them out of the way of what's actually essential.

I was working with someone yesterday and she came across some old food that no one in her family was eating. She could see and decide that this food was clutter because it wasn't obscured by a bunch of other things in her kitchen cabinets. She simplified how she looked at things and it was clear. That's what you're doing as you continue to go through each item at a time.

When you see that something is clutter, put it in the appropriate bag. Each time you do that, you'll feel a little better. There are no 'maybes'. Maybe usually means, "I don't need this anymore, but I don't want to let it go." I sometimes have a client use something that they are stuck on. They pretty quickly see it doesn't have a place in their life anymore and they let go of their hold.

As you go through each item from your kitchen cabinet, set aside the things that you actually do use and love. When you are done, clean out the bottom of the cabinet. It will make you feel better about that cabinet space. Then place the items back in the cabinet in a way that feels right to you.

I hope you have a good clutter bust! If you get too stuck or overwhelmed and can't do it, I'm available for online video clutter busts. My rate is $75 hour, payable through PayPal. The actual work takes less time than you imagine. You can email me at brooks@clutterbusting.com