Simplify Your Spaces

The Three Ds of Decluttering

The first rule of a big Declutter is the Purge.

EVERYTHING comes out of the cabinet, closet, room, etc. before ANYTHING else goes back in.

But what do you do with all the stuff that’s now in the middle of the floor?

That’s where the Three Ds of Decluttering come in …

Gather 3 laundry baskets or big boxes and label them

(scrap pieces of paper next to them on the floor will work just fine …. nothing fancy needed)

  1. Designate
  2. Donate
  3. Discard

Now it’s decision time …. pick up each item and ask yourself what needs to be done with it.

Will you designate, donate or discard it?


Do you have somewhere for it to go?   and back in the junk pile/area is NOT an option

If it’s a decorating item you’ve held on to for ten years without doing anything with it then you probably aren’t ever going to find a spot for it so it needs to be donated or discarded.

Be honest with yourself.  If you’re going to keep it, you HAVE to have someplace specific for it to go.


The donate pile is for anything you’re going to give away SOON.  The donate items do not go back in the junk pile/area.  If you seriously want to donate it then give yourself a time limit to get it done.

If you think a friend or family member would like something you no longer want and/or need then call or text them right AFTER you finish the decluttering project.  Do NOT hold on to something you think somebody MIGHT want.  Find out!

I too have carried around bags of clothes in my trunk for months with the good intention of taking them to Goodwill.  Reward yourself if you have to, but make the effort and find the time to actually donate the things you say you’re going to.


If it’s broken, dirty and trash … it goes … in the trash!  Please don’t donate junk.  Just let it go!

Discard can also be for things you want to sell, but ONLY if you’re actually going to do it.  This one needs a time limit too.  If it’s good enough to sell and you haven’t gotten it done in a week’s time, then it needs to be donated.


If it’s in a junk area and you haven’t seen it in years, then you probably don’t need it.

After you’re done, reward yourself …. you deserve it!  You are on the way to a simplified life.

Related Posts …

How to Get Things Done on a Saturday

Decluttering Project … Drawers

Simplify the Season  a post about simplifying the Christmas season, but it works for any holiday

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3 thoughts on “The Three Ds of Decluttering”

    1. Start small … do just a little bit every day. If you signed up for my “newsletter”, it sends you an easy way to get started. I use that method all the time.

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