By Rita Wilkins
The Downsizing Designer
Have you ever found yourself saying…
“It’s so much easier to declutter and get organized when my spouse is not around.”
“He doesn’t really help, he just complains or gets in my way”
As the Downsizing Designer, I can’t tell you how often I hear these kinds of comments because decluttering is an emotional conversation. So, I often respond by saying, “Wouldn’t it be great if you could find ways to take on that big project together?” ….
Not only to lighten the load and get a lot more done but in the end, you both reap the rewards of combining your efforts so that your home is:
- Less cluttered
- More organized
- More peaceful
And in the process of decluttering and organizing together, you learn a lot about each other.
- Why you hold onto certain things.
- Why it’s hard to let go of specific things.
- And why you accumulated so much in the first place.
Understanding the reasons, you hold onto things will ultimately allow you to make lasting changes so that you don’t continue to accumulate more in the future.
I will tell you though, that I do get pushback when I suggest that couples find ways to work together on decluttering and organizing their home instead of trying to do it all alone and then resenting it.
If one of your New Year’s resolutions is to finally declutter your home and get organized in 2022, why not make that a shared goal so that you can both enjoy the process and the benefits?
Having worked closely with many couples over the years on the design and decluttering of their homes, I have frequently found myself in the crosshairs, so I’ve developed my…
5 Top Tips on How to Get Your Spouse on Board When Decluttering and Organizing Your Home
1. Have a conversation about how clutter is impacting your home, your relationship, your family, and your kids
- Talk about why it’s important to YOU (relieve stress, frustration, and overwhelm).
- Talk about why and how clutter is impacting your spouse.
2. Ask for help. Let your spouse know you need and want their help and you would like to do it together as a couple.
Sometimes all we have to do is ask.
When your partner knows how much it bothers you and how important it is to you, it is likely they will be on board to help.
It may take time to develop ways to work together on decluttering, but at least it’s a start.
3. Find common ground and share your vision. Have your partner share their vision for life after clutter.
Develop a shared vision for a simpler life without clutter.
Develop a decluttering plan and timeline together, one that you both agree upon and will abide by.
Don’t Let Another Year Go By!
This is Your Solution to Start Decluttering
4. Respect each other’s obstacles and barriers in the decluttering process… don’t judge.
Inevitably, certain items will trigger strong emotions.
Take the opportunity to understand:
- Why that item is so difficult to let go of.
- Sentimental attachment?
- Fear they might need or want it later?
- Regret about how much money they spent on that item?
And at other times, the process can be so overwhelming that one of you might want to give up.
- Stand by each other at times like this and show your support.
- Remind each other of why you want to declutter.
- Keep in mind your vision for life after clutter.
Working on this project together is an opportunity to work as a team to help each other push through barriers so you can accomplish this big goal together.
5. Lead by example
It’s not always easy when you’re starting out, but if you want to get started, focus on your own stuff, your own closets your own desk.
- Let your partner see the results of your efforts.
- Likely they will be inspired and follow your lead.
- Ultimately, you’ll find ways to work together on decluttering.
If you are motivated to finally declutter your home and get organized this year in 2022 and if you wish your spouse would help out, try my 5 top tips to get the conversation going and get your project started so that this can be the year that you’ve finally decluttered and organized.
After all, wouldn’t it be worth finding common ground so that
you can get it done together?