Today's bonus mission is to set up and put away your Christmas presents soon after receiving them, to cut down on clutter in your home.
Today is a great day to get in the habit of finding a place for, and putting away gifts and other new items you bring into your home, immediately, instead of letting them just sit around becoming clutter.
Have you ever received a present, or gotten something for yourself, and then since you were in a hurry you sat it down somewhere in your home, such as on a counter, or on the floor in the corner in your bedroom, and then it just sat there, for a very long time?
When this type of thing happens, it means that the gift you've received, or the item you've otherwise brought into your home is functionally clutter, because it's not being used or enjoyed.
Don't let this happen to you! Instead, devote the time necessary to remove the tags and packaging off items, set things up if necessary by adding batteries, or plugging them in, getting them charged up, or learning how to use them, and then getting them put away where they go in your home so you can use these items in the future, and not have them contribute to the clutter in your home.
This is also a great teaching opportunity for your kids. If they've gotten presents for Christmas, their birthday, or you've given them something just because, make sure to help them set up and put away their items as well.
After all, this simple skill really can help your home from accumulating clutter, over time, so it's worth teaching your kids this skill now.
Whenever something new comes into your home it's necessary to find a storage location to put it in, such as a drawer, a shelf, a cabinet, etc.
Sometimes there's more than enough room for something new (especially if your home is already mainly decluttered), but if this new item will replace something old, or you don't have room for the new item in your home otherwise, you need to practice the one in, one out rule, to make sure you do have room for the new gift or item.
The one in, one out rule, is as simple as it sounds. If you bring in one thing into your home, to avoid clutter creep, remove something else, typically that serves the same function, but that you don't want as much, or something approximately the same size as the new object.
In practice, this can look like receiving a new sweater, and then deciding that the older sweater, with some holes in it, or the one you've never liked as much, or the one that's too big now because you've lost weight, could go, replaced with this new sweater you've just received.
Sometimes, despite people's well meaning intentions when giving you a gift, they miss the mark, and as you receive it you know you don't want it, need it, or like it, and subsequently, won't use it.
There's no need to be rude as you receive the gift. You should still act grateful when you receive it, because honestly, it is the thought that counts.
However, be honest with youurself, if from the very beginning you know something you've received is clutter, to you, and you know you won't use it, go ahead and get rid of it during this mission.
You can return the gift for store credit, or re-gift it to someone else, or donate it for someone else to use.
I know some people may balk at those suggestions, but honestly, once you receive a gift it is yours to do with what you want, and you shouldn't suffer from guilt just because someone gave it to you, and you don't like it.
I'm not suggesting throwing it in the trash in front of the person who gave it to you, but later, once you're dealing with it in your own home, you've got to remember to be nice to yourself as much as you would be to the person who gave you the gift.
There's no reason to wait years and years to get rid of the gift, if you already know it's clutter to you. If you're really going to declutter your home you're going to have to get rid of this item at some point, so why not now, instead of after it accumulates dust for years, and causes you grief and hassle because it's taking up valuable space that you can't use for something else you do like, want and use?
So start a new habit and routine, starting today, that from now on, as you receive gifts, or bring new items into your home, you'll set them up and put them away soon thereafter, or get rid of the clutter immediately, so your home maintains its clutter free state!
I hope this quick and easy bonus Declutter 365 mission has inspired you to put away and set up your own Christmas presents, or whatever gifts you receive throughout the year, soon after you receive them. After all, it's quick and easy, and really does keep clutter from accumulating around your home.
When you begin to declutter the feeling you get is contagious, so if you're loving the results you're getting I encourage you to keep going.
I've got a whole series of 15 minute decluttering missions (eventually 365 of them!) that you can do.
Just pick and choose the ones you want to do, that will make a big impact in your home. But if you want someone else to tell you the order you can also grab the 15 minute daily decluttering mission calendars and follow along as we all get our homes clutter free together!
If you haven't already, make sure to get the mission of cleaning up your wrapping paper and other Christmas day mess cleaned up as well!
Further, if it's time to also put away and store your Christmas decorations, make sure to check out the Christmas storage and organization tips here on the site.
I would love to hear from you, sharing your thoughts, questions, or ideas about this topic, so leave me a comment below. I try to always respond back!