write photo by Dane Deaner on Unsplash

10 Methods of Decluttering that Aren’t Marie Kondo — the Pros & Cons

#2. Pinterest List Method

Mrs. Wright
10 min readSep 20, 2020

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Clutter can seem impossible at times, but some methods can help you conquer your possessions.

As a bonus, learning to declutter can help you save time. A study by Current Psychology shows a link between procrastination and clutter. Those who put off doing unpleasant tasks, like paying bills, also put off the difficult work of decluttering their homes.

Decluttering can also help reduce stress. In a study on how clutter can create cortisol, women who described their homes with “clutter words” or “house unfinished words” were more depressed and stressed throughout the day.

Growing up, my mom (as the head of our household) did her best but letting go of things was a struggle. There were piles of New Yorker magazines she was going to read someday then use the covers to wallpaper the bathroom. Neither happened. Mom was a good cook, and her lasagna can’t be beaten, but the kitchen was so disorganized no one else would go in. Decluttering was a stressful event, usually done when there were other stressful events like company coming over, and there was always yelling and frustration involved.

Growing up with too much clutter means that I didn’t learn how to keep a home from my childhood home. But thanks to magazines, and now the internet, I run an orderly household. According to my children, I still struggle with letting things go, but they’ve turned minimalist, and things have less value to them. I don’t think either of them is going to want our china.

I believe Marie Kondo* works and that her methods have radically changed many people’s lives. But I also think that her approach (intentionally) makes more “mess” before things get better. For example, in each category, you collect every item you have. She has clients pull out every item of clothing from every space in your house and put it on your bed for books. Yes, it will be motivation to get it done so you can sleep, but I like smaller projects where I won’t be stuck if life happens, and I’m in the middle of decluttering.

Here are ten decluttering methods … that aren’t Marie Kondo.

1. The Four Box Method Trash, Donate/Give

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Mrs. Wright

Former restaurant reviewer and newspaper photographer. Married to a part-time goat farmer. BA Communications; MAEd.