Decluttering and recycling for the New Year

by | Jan 15, 2024 | Decluttering | 0 comments

January is the nursery of good intentions and where old habits meet their end.  Start as you mean to go is the feeling as 2024 begins to unfold.  Green Man and Van have an ethos for moving house, which can come in handy anytime, particularly in the New Year.  For our customers who are interested in a sustainable removal experience, we always suggest approaching the three D’s well in advance.

The Three D’s

  • Declutter
  • Downsize
  • Donate

Declutter for mental well-being and clarity

Decluttering and organizing space have been shown to improve mental well-being, performance, and clarity. Crucial if you are also working from home part-time.  Having order in the home and living space lends itself to original thinking and inspiration. So many interior design trends of late have emphasized minimalism with accents of natural comfort and materials in gentle furnishings. The reason is, that modern life is a torrent of information, products, and new upgrades. People want to seek refuge in clear calm spaces, that they can call home. It’s easy to declutter and it sets you up with better consumer habits for the future, more order and less chaos!

5 decluttering tips for mental well-being

Decluttering is a great way of clearing the debris that procrastination builds up. Building the muscle of decluttering gets you in the groove of fresh activity. Procrastination avoids activity and prefers to hide in the clutter.  So, tackle the clutter to go beyond procrastination. Plus, once you declutter your living space, you can also tackle your desktop, hard drive, and downloads.  Essentially, decluttering feels good!

  1. Declutter easy areas of the house first, for example, start with clothes, and begin to put some things aside for donation.
  2. Declutter duplicates in the house and group the same objects together all in one place. For example, have one place in the house where all the spare chargers are kept, instead of finding them in multiple locations throughout the house. Grouping objects together will help you donate or dispose of duplicates.
  3. Consider the Mari Kondo method and ask yourself “Does it spark joy?” as you wonder whether you should keep your mother’s ceramic bulldog in prime position on the shelf.
  4. Assign surfaces as clutter-free zones, and establish places for each item in the house, so they can return to their designated homes without loitering with intent on surfaces. Set up storage spaces where things can live out of sight and out of mind.
  5. Sentimental material is the hardest to make decisions about, so approach it last. If objects are sentimental but utterly useless and take up valuable space, you may want to consider putting some into storage. Particularly if it is furniture that may develop in value over time.

5 advantages to downsizing

Downsizing has had negative connotations, but many people are discovering the joy of downsizing and being less encumbered by their possessions and the square meterage they must uphold.  It is always possible to downsize your footprint in a home by minimizing excess furniture and possessions. Plus, there are ways in which you can use storage space to keep your living space minimal in a smaller home. Storage space can help you take excess out of your living space while you decide what to do with those items, or gradually sell them and pass them on.

Another option is not to literally downsize your home, but you can reconsider how much you fill it up with things, and experiment with living with more free space. Here are five advantages to having more frequent downsize events in life, and tips for living in a smaller space.

  1. Store out-of-season clothes, shoes, and toys away out of sight. Use storage boxes to keep these in good shape while they are stored in an attic, basement, or even professional storage arrangement. Have seasonal decluttering sessions and season changes of what is stored away.  Less is more – particularly in rotation!
  2. Upkeeping and heating large draughty houses or offices can put extra stress into the equation. Having a smaller more energy-efficient blueprint makes sense in the long run. Focus on making smaller spaces energy efficient and reducing your carbon footprint in the home.
  3. Downsizing makes perfect sense when you are not sure of your next move. Placing your items in secure storage and researching living options by travelling and renting opens your vistas to new ways of living and unexpected opportunities.
  4. When you have a smaller space, you are less inclined to buy more items that could clutter it up again. This way you can break the cycle of needless accumulation and be more mindful about your consumer choices.
  5. The more you accumulate over time, the harder it is to let go of it. That goes for stuff as well as memories. For people forced to downsize after years of living in a family home, the process can be overwhelming. Having sporadic downsizes over time can be helpful mentally and emotionally and increase adaptability and flexibility.

Donate to make more space

Donating clothes and books to charity shops is easy to do. Some charity shops will appreciate it if you check with them in advance to see if they want more stock.  The British Heart Foundation and the Salvation Army will also come to collect donated furniture from your home.

Alternatively, if you research your local area there may be other charity collection services that could benefit from your old furniture. Releasing possessions into the wider field can be a great feeling, as generosity is always a winner. Local schools may take your old soft toys or appreciate any old games.  A little bit of time researching can mean you can repurpose items in good time before they become obsolete and unwanted. One of our guidelines to our customers when moving house is to consider the floor plan carefully. It’s worth donating oversized furniture in advance, rather than finding out on moving day that it won’t fit in the new property. Similarly, we encourage our customers to check everything can fit through the doors and will work with the new floor plan. It’s not worth paying to move furniture which will only be a burden in the new place.  If you have time in advance, you can be sure that it goes to the right home, rather than being forced into a landfill at the last minute.

Green Man and Van – sustainable removals and storage in London

Our removals and storage service in London is the sustainable choice for customers wishing to lower their carbon footprint when moving house.  Our electrical vehicles and support of Woodland Heritage offer Londoners an ethical choice when moving home or looking for a reliable storage solution.  We are also just friendly and efficient, and that counts for a lot too. For large and small moves about the city, you can count on our professional and reliable services. Check out our reviews here. Moving responsibly towards a carbon-neutral London, one box at a time.