Life After Decluttering – What’s Next?

The following is a guest post from regular contributor, Emily at So Damn Domestic.

Life After Decluttering, What's Next?

What’s life after decluttering like?

…AFTER decluttering? You mean there’s an end?

Yep. There is. At least, there can be. If you work as quickly as you can AND keep more clutter from coming in (Step 4 in this post), you will reach an “ending.”

You’ll look around and realize that your house feels good. That there isn’t another scary closet to empty and sort through. That your garage has tools, bikes, and maybe a car or two in it, but no more boxes of “stuff to go through later.” That you aren’t constantly moving things out of the way in order to get to the things you need.

What then? What’s next?

1.  Enjoy your home. What is it you wanted to do in your living room again? Oh, that’s right. Play games with your family, read books, do handicrafts, snuggle up to watch movies… You can do all of those things now!

2.  Or, don’t. Maybe you felt tied to your home because there was so much work to do, but you really want to pack up and travel. Or go for a hike. Or hang out at Starbucks with your girlfriends. Do it.

3.  Learn something new. Have you always wanted to play the guitar? Did you keep all of your beautiful bamboo yarn because it makes you happy to pet it, but you haven’t learned to knit yet? Or go take ballroom dancing, yoga, kung-fu, or calligraphy!

Go follow your dreams!

Or… Have you been drowning in clutter long enough that you’ve forgotten your dreams? Is the only dream you can conceive right now to be finished with your laundry?

Get in touch with yourself again. Try meditating each morning. If you’re not sure how to start, grab the Headspace app and give it a try. It’s awkward at first, but after a little while, you’ll get into the groove and discover new things about yourself and what you want from life.

Two more things you’ll need to do when you’re finished decluttering?

These aren’t necessarily super-fun things like the first three… but you’ll need to do them regardless.

1.  Tweak your organization system. If you have all the right “stuff” and no more excess/clutter, but your systems (doing laundry, dishes, cooking, crafting, whatever) still feel clunky and awkward, chances are you need to change something about how they’re organized or stored. There’s no one answer I can share with you about the one way to fix any and every situation, but trying different things will help you figure out what organizational direction to head in.

2.  Maintain your peace. Even if you’ve finished decluttering everything in your house for the stage of life you’re in right now, things change. Kids will grow, you might change size or shape, your family may expand or older children will move out. You might decide to move on from a hobby or pick up a new one. Tools wear out or break. Stay on top of your home’s stuff-situation, and declutter as necessary. This is nowhere near as intense as your initial decluttering project… but it’s every bit as important. 10 or 15 minutes a week may even be enough!

I want to know – What ARE your dreams? What ARE your post-decluttering goals? What do you plan to do with your time and space when you reach the next stage? Comment and let me know!

Emily Chapelle headshot

Emily Chapelle offers motivating guidance to busy women who are ready to make the kinds of changes that last. Why? So they can spend more time on the things and people that really matter. She shares home organizing tips, decluttering your life, time-management for homemakers, and other homemaking topics at So Damn Domestic. Her ebook, Finding the Awesome – 3 Steps to Doing More & Stressing Less, has been downloaded over 3,244 times, and you can get it for free.


Filed under: Emily, Guest Bloggers, Purging


4 Responses to Life After Decluttering – What’s Next?

  1. 1
    Trisha says

    What a great post! I’m not yet to the point of “life after decluttering,” but that is my goal. I can’t wait for the days where everything has a place and is easy to find so I can spend more time traveling without dreading coming home to a messy house!

  2. 2
    Christina says

    I want to play with my art supplies and play in my garden….and I am. The clutter is moving out slowly. But pretty much every day SOMETHING goes out and I’ve outgrown wanting stuff in (unless it’s useful to me). I’ll get there (decluttered) someday but I HAVE reclaimed my life.

  3. 3
    Angela @ Setting My Intention says

    I am definitely not at the place of “after” but making progress. Hubby and I are decluttering our “area of shame” – the basement. Blogging about it has been keeping us accountable. Can’t wait to get to “after”

  4. 4
    Amy says

    I have been getting rid of clutter for about a year now and my home is beginning to feel clutter free. The only problem is that I am now suddenly having a feeling of emptiness and depression. Maybe I held onto the clutter for emotional reasons. I’m not sure I have fully processed the death of my father two years ago, for example. I’m glad I’m decluttering but I really looked forward to feeling BETTER, not worse! I’m sure this will pass as I begin to figure out WHAT I want to do with myself! I have two kids that I homeschool but am beginning to feel very bored being at home. Who knows? Maybe I’ll go back to work part time for the family business or something! Have you ever heard of this feeling of depression and emptiness after decluttering?


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