9 Surprising Decluttering Tips for the Insanely Busy Mom

Declutter your home quickly and easily with these surprising tips to declutter your house – even if you’re insanely busy.

Can I get real for a moment?

Since having our twins, our house has been practically overtaken by kids’ stuff.

It’s like every surface I look at is covered in toys and clothes!

Can you relate, mama?

Please tell me you can!

And it’s hard, isn’t it?

Trying to keep the house tidy – so it doesn’t stress you out – and chase after the kids all day, run errands, and still have time for yourself, well, that’s nearly impossible.

But I’m learning that there is one way to make it all a bit easier – declutter!


We barely have time to make a cup of coffee, why should we find time to declutter?

Don’t worry, mama! It’ll be totally worth it – I promise.

Why Make Time to Declutter?

Maybe you made ‘get organized’ one of your New Year’s Resolutions? I sure did!

But I’m realizing more and more that I can’t get – and stay – organized unless I declutter first.

And it doesn’t end there. Decluttering makes life easier in so many ways: there’s less stuff to clean, it’s easier to find things and there’s more space – so important now that my twins are growing up.

If you’re feeling inspired to declutter, let’s find out nine surprising ways you can start decluttering quickly and easily.

Before You Declutter

1. (Don’t) Just Start

Everywhere you look, people are telling you to ‘just start’.

And that sounds like good advice. But don’t start without a plan – otherwise, you’ll end up making a huge mess.

And it doesn’t have to be a very detailed plan, but at least work out what you want to achieve and, most importantly, what you’re going to do with the clutter you decide to get rid of.

Because getting rid of the clutter is often the hardest part, isn’t it?

So think about which local charitable groups you’d like to donate your unwanted items to –  this can really make letting go of sentimental items much easier!

My twins know that every season we go through their toys and donate ones that they no longer like, play with or have outgrown. It’s a great lesson to teach your child to never waste and to help other children less fortunate.

Make sure to plan where you’re going to store any items you’d like to sell on Ebay. And find out what recycling facilities there are near you.

2. Start Today

For moms, this is the holy grail of decluttering.

We are all guilty of waiting for the ‘right time’ to start, but let me tell you a secret – there is no ‘right time’!

I know it’s tempting to wait until dad or grandma has the kids, or until you’ve finished that other project. But the right time to start is now.

Make your plan and get started.  If you keep putting it off, the clutter will just get worse!

You’ll thank yourself later.

3. Get Some Help

Now, personally, I prefer to declutter alone. It makes the whole process go faster.

But you could recruit someone to make dinner – or order takeout!

You can also ask someone to load up the car with things to donate. Or even to drive stuff to a recycling center. Since my husband works from home, I usually get him to help move bags and boxes to the trunk to get him in the decluttering spirit!

You’re not the only one who lives in your house. And you won’t be the only one to benefit from a decluttered home.

So, don’t be afraid to ask for help, mama!

4. Lower Your Expectations

Yikes! This one is hard.

I know you might want to declutter your whole home in one weekend. But let’s be realistic.

Whatever you plan to declutter today – half it! And if you’re a new mom, half it again!

Decluttering is emotionally and physically grueling So, give yourself a break and remember that doing a thorough job is better than rushing it.

You got this, mama!

5. Decide Where to Start

When the whole house needs decluttering, where are we supposed to start?

I like to pick the areas that will have the biggest impact on my daily life.

Keep a notebook with you for a few days – or start a list on your phone. And note down all the specific spots in your home that annoy you or slow down your daily routines.

Maybe it’s an overstuffed shoe cabinet by the front door?

Maybe it’s a kitchen cupboard so full of dishes you can never find the one you want?

For the more ambitious mom, one “hack” I like to do when I’m in the decluttering mode is to only pick one area of the house (or one room, really) to focus on. Today may be the kitchen and I will work on decluttering and organizing the pantry until I move on to the living room or my twins’ bedroom.

This might take longer, but it is more efficient.

Now pick the most annoying one and start there!

While You Declutter

6. Choose How to Declutter

Did you know there’s more than one way to declutter?

And different decluttering methods will suit different people.

So, if you’ve tried and failed to declutter in the past – try a different approach! Here’s a helpful list of 5 different ways to declutter.

Which one is best for you? *Let me know in the comments!

7. Don’t Say, “Maybe”

Ok, this one will be controversial!

A lot of moms I know start a ‘maybe’ pile when they’re decluttering. But, here’s the thing – it’s just a delaying tactic. Because you’ve got to go back again and decide if you’re going to keep it or not. Can I say ‘time-waster’?

Touch each item once. Pick it up and decide – keep it or toss it.

After you Finish Decluttering

8. Get Ready to Do It Again

Depressing, right?

But that’s a fact of life with kids.

There will always be clutter because they’ll keep growing out of clothes, toys and books. And there’ll always be a steady influx of papers from school!

Just like showering and cleaning your teeth – decluttering never ends!

So, schedule regular decluttering appointments for yourself and treat them like any other appointment you gotta keep.

9. Listen to the Clutter

Do you ever notice that certain parts of your home become cluttered very quickly and easily?

Well, that clutter build-up is usually a sign that you need to create some kind of organizing system.

I love using these organizing pockets for both my twins’ school papers, art and library books.

And don’t forget to teach your children a new ‘arriving home’ routine which means they get into the habit of hanging up coats and storing their outdoor items without you reminding them over and over again.

Listen to the clutter, mama!

Are You Ready to Declutter?

Wow! Aren’t you excited to dive in and get decluttering?

Hopefully, these tips will help you get started decluttering quickly and easily. And I promise you’ll love your clearer, tidier, less stressful home!

For more help, check out some cleaning hacks for the whole house once you declutter!

Now, tell me in the comments – what do you plan to declutter first, mama?

Remember to pin me for later!

Leave a Reply


Great post, Elna! #7 is definitely controversial, and I think it depends on your background and income level (can you afford to replace it if you really need it)? I actually encourage my readers to have a box with stuff they aren’t sure about and put the date on it. Keep it in storage. In 6 months to a year, if you don’t remember anything in there and never think to pull it out, you can just give it away without even looking at the stuff again. So not necessarily a time waster. Everything else? Such great stuff! Thanks for sharing. 🙂Reply to June
Hey June, Great suggestions! While I like to not have a maybe pile, I do know that it helps others. My husband, for example, can’t part with things so I tell him I’ll keep it and if you don’t use it for 3 months I’ll get rid of it. That’s the compromise I do! The weather is getting warmer so spring cleaning is around the corner!Reply to Elna
These are great tips. I am in the process of decluttering and I agree that a “Maybe” pile is not a good thingReply to Julie
Hi Julie, Yes, a maybe pile means you’ll never get around to it! Thanks for stopping over!Reply to Elna
Hey Elna! These are great! We have to relocate often because of my husbands job and I always do I big purge before we move. I will keep these in mind around October when we move yet again! Thanks for your amazingly awesome advice!Reply to chelsey
Hi Chelsey, Thanks so much for stopping by! Love your blog btw!!!! Wow, I don’t know if I can handle moving around so much. We are, in fact, going to move later this year and it’s already causing me to purge!!!Reply to Elna
Yes, decluttering helps calm the crazy and makes cleaning the house easier since there’s less shoving junk in random places going on! I really need to tackle kids’ clothes, and you’ve inspired me to just take it one dresser at a time and go.Reply to Lisa
Hey Lisa! Thanks for coming over! Yeah, decluttering is my #1 ways in March!! OMG!!Reply to Elna