We tend to spend most of our home time in the bedroom. That naturally lends to the conditioning of informality within its spaces, which is further manifested in our lax attitude to its organizational and spatial hygiene. We take liberties with our books and clothes, cut corners, so to speak, and scatter around needless paraphernalia.
So, coming across a badly-cluttered bedroom is not as uncommon as you may think. It is a natural instinct within us i.e. there is a psychological aspect of materialism that creates clutter in our homes. We get emotionally attached to possessions we don’t really need. Losing these possessions triggers a reaction in our anterior cingulate cortex and insula, the part associated with physical pain.
In other words, losing an object of sentimental or monetary value tends to give out the impression of physical pain to us. So, it’s no wonder that we don’t discard these possessions when we should. Our brains might trick us into thinking all of our possessions are important, when that simply isn’t the case. This gradually builds up into clutter within our home spaces, especially the bedroom.
So how do you declutter your bedroom?
Ask yourself these questions about your bedroom’s items
Does it have a purpose anymore?
Do you really need that old book you finished reading 2 years ago? What’s the point of it gathering dust in your bookshelf?
Does it work as it was originally supposed to?
Does that music system work as smoothly as it did in 2014? Wouldn’t it be better to invest in a new one whose sound is crystal clear?
Is it functional, as opposed to just sentimental?
Does that old, faded shirt have any point hanging in your cupboard? You may love it, but maybe it’s past its prime!
If you answered “No” to all of those questions, then the likelihood is that you will need to discard these items, so as to declutter your space.
Here are 10 other tips to help you declutter your bedroom:
1. Make the Bed & Use the Space Under the Bed!
The bed is one of the main features — if not the main feature — of the bedroom. After all, it’s what the bedroom is named for! So it stands to reason that it needs to be at its most immaculate if you want your bedroom to look good. It’s a useful habit to make it every morning, because, apart from the exercise, the vista of a neat bed further encourages neatness in your room. If you keep a messy bed then you will also tend to indulge in creating a mess on it, with discarded clothes, books, and other miscellaneous items.
One of the biggest reasons items tend to be strewn around messily, is the lack of ample storage space. So, as a partial solution, use the space under the bed to store empty luggage, out-of-season clothing (such as sweaters and woollens), toys, vinyl records, board games, and books. They can be put there in cartons or in a large pull-out drawer.
2. Get a Clothes Bag, Basket, or Hamper
Don’t give yourself the chance to throw your clothes haphazardly all over your bedroom. Dump all your dirty clothes in a convenient container. For the job, you can find many types of laundry bags, baskets, and hampers on eCommerce websites, in materials such as canvas, mesh, metal mesh, and steel. You can even get a traditional-look one of natural material, such as bamboo, rattan, or jute. Laundry bags and baskets give you a convenient method to temporarily store dirty clothes, before you send them to the washing machine area.
3. Review Clothing Items on a Monthly Basis
The most guilty party, when it comes to clutter in your bedroom, is the cupboard for clothes. Even though it covers the mess from house guests, the mess is still hiding behind closed doors in the form of clothes, many of which you no longer wear. Your clothes also tend to get piled haphazardly on top of each other, in your reluctance to fold and sort them—such that you can no longer find that stylish t-shirt you’re always looking for!
The solution to this clothes clutter problem is to have a monthly review of your cupboard. If some clothes and shoes need mending, send them to the darzee (tailor) and mochi (cobbler). If you recognize some clothes and shoes that you’re not using, then sell/donate them to relatives, neighbours, or NGOs. For the ones you want, retain them and fold them into piles… and then look at the next tip.
4. Store Clothes into Manageable Categories
Store them in a logical fashion. Categorize your clothing into formals and casuals, and give them an allotted area to store in your large, air-freshened cupboard/wardrobe/armoire. Then further categorize them into product types — such as undergarments, socks, trousers, button-down shirts, t-shirts, denims, etc. — and store them in areas based on frequency of usage.
If you’re the type to wear more casual clothes weekly, store the casual clothes in a higher drawer or space, with the formals folded neatly in a lower drawer/space. This makes it easier to reach. You could also just buy a wardrobe organizer to make life easier.
5. Buy Nightstands, Bedside Tables, & Chest of Drawers
What if your clothes and other miscellaneous items aren’t fitting in the bedroom cupboard itself? You can buy chests of drawers, nightstands, lingerie dressers, and bedroom side tables to give yourself extra storage space. You can also sort and store clothes, books, files, documents, pens, wires, chargers, files, and gadgets inside these drawers. The furniture items come from anywhere between INR. 5000 to 20000, and are a handy product to reduce clutter.
6. Buy an Office Table
If you have a larger bedroom with a need to study, read, or work, buy a office table or work desk. Not only can it help you do these activities, but it can also serve as a storage unit for your official files and documents, as well as cables, wires, chargers, and electronic devices. You can find out some more tips on how to keep a home office work desk decluttered here (hyperlink)
7. Clear Out In-Between Clutter Spaces
Have you noticed that you sometimes create in-between clutter spaces in your bedroom? For example, it could be the space on top of the clothes hamper, where, instead of putting dirty clothes inside the hamper, you put them on the lid. Or it could be a chair, where you tend to hang clothes you want to use the next day. Or it could be the top of a desk, where you leave an impossible entanglement of laptops, consoles, or wires. These tend to pile up over time and become permanently cluttered spaces. Instead, organize your items into more appropriate spaces. Make sure to allot times in the day where you correct these bad habits, and eventually they will fade away.
8. Decide on Permanent Storage Spaces for Things
Now, if you already have enough storage space then the issue comes down to where to store things. The trick is to store things in convenient spaces, so that you don’t have to go out of the way to procure them again. If they are kept in inconvenient spaces then you might get put off and not store them there again. All this requires is a sensible understanding of how you use your bedroom and go about your daily activities. You need to understand your peculiarities — because whatever works for you is unique. Supposing you’re the type to leave for work early without breakfast, your shoes being conveniently stored under your bed could be a great idea for a quick exit.
9. Use Dustbins & Trash Cans
Decluttering a bedroom is far easier with a dustbin or trash can in the vicinity. All the unnecessary items are discarded regularly through the week/month, and its makes disposal more convenient. There are a variety of them available online, in the form of perforated stainless steel dustbins, plastic dustbins, pedal bins, etc.
10. Cleaning Regularly
At the end of the day, cleaning is one of the most important aspects of decluttering. Though it doesn’t directly involve the removal of unnecessary possessions, it is paramount to the process.
If you keep your bedroom clean, then you won’t like it if it gets cluttered. Furthermore and more importantly, if you keep your storage areas dirty, then you won’t feel like storing items in them. This will further lead to piling and clutter in the bedroom. So make sure to undertake a monthly or quarterly clean-up, for whenever dust or other impurities accumulate. Clear out your cupboards, drawers, and desks. Use a smooth-functioning vacuum cleaner to clean them out, or do it the old way with a large, fluffy duster and a wet cloth There are several affordable cleaning techniques and ingredients which we have described in greater detail, on this blog (hyperlink). Be sure to check them out.