With the shortest days (and longest nights) of the year, winter can certainly live up to its bleak reputation — but winter also encourages slowing down and inspiration. This month, take advantage of the momentum a new year brings to clear out clutter and plan for the year ahead. Here are a few tips and ideas:
Post-holiday clean up
- Pack up holiday decorations carefully for next year.
- Give your living space a thorough cleaning after holiday season entertaining.
- Break down cardboard boxes, gather wrapping
materials to recycle.
- Determine which gifts you will use and find a place to keep them. Label accordingly.
- Create space by editing out unused, worn or broken items.
- Exchange unwanted gifts or simply let them go before stashing them in a closet to be forgotten.
Declutter your catch all zone
Clear away paper, old pens, rubber bands, electronics and other random items that have migrated and haven’t found their way back to where they belong. Clean the surface, remove old notices from the bulletin board and put up a new calendar.
Clear Clutter Responsibly
If you are doing a new year’s purge of unwanted items, keep things out of the landfill and help others by donating gently used items to a good cause. For other items be sure to recycle responsibly — try the Earth 911 recycle search to find a recycling center that accepts electronics, paint, clothing and more in your area.
Set aside time for home projects
Use your winter downtime to research and plan home remodelling or organizing, paint selection or perhaps a summer garden or new landscape design. Plans lead to action and actions lead to finished projects.