15 Ways How To Gain Motivation To Declutter

By Ray Arya •  Updated: 09/09/20 •  14 min read

*Disclosure: This article may have affiliate links, so I may receive a commission, at no cost to you, if you make a purchase through a link.


If you are struggling to maintain motivation to declutter and organize your home, you’re not alone.

Standing in front of the gigantic mess that you have collected over the years can be quite overwhelming.

Yet, you want to get rid of it because it’s driving you crazy. But how?

The secret for succeeding is to have a simple system you can rely on whenever you feel stuck. A simple formula that will make you feel pumped every time you need to reduce your stuff.

The key factors are to remind yourself of the following:

  • Question: Why do I want to declutter?
    Answer: I want to free up space, time, money, and energy.

  • Question: What are the short-term benefits I expect after decluttering?
    Answer: I’ll be left with a tidy, clean, and organized home, that I can enjoy more.

  • Question: What are the long-term benefits?
    Answer: I will learn to value the existing possessions that are important to me more and reduce accumulating stuff that will clutter up my life again.

To give you an idea how to make decluttering a habit, let’s deep dive into some highly effective ways to keep your motivation levels high.

Here are 15 ways to boost your motivation to declutter your home.


15 effective ways to keep you motivated when decluttering

1. Ask yourself why you want to declutter
2. Envision a clutter-free home
3. Believe that you can do it
4. Set yourself a time-based decluttering goal
5. Make a plan and schedule your decluttering times
6. Focus on the benefits of a clutter-free home
7. Start small and gain momentum
8. Use a timer to work more efficient
9. Create small clutter-free zones
10. Invite your friends and throw a party
11. Motivate yourself with daily and weekly rewards
12. Get a decluttering partner
13. Track your progress
14. Decluttering is fun
15. Cultivate a decluttering habit


If you ask how to get the motivation to get rid of stuff, then you’re in the right place.

Decluttering is simple but never easy.

And there is no way that your cluttering mess will disappear by itself or get organized within an hour.

It will take you time and action. But it will also reward you massively with more freedom.

And here is how.



The best way to get started is to ask yourself why you want to get rid and organize stuff in the first place and then focus on your answers to keep yourself motivated.

Everyone wants a tidy home, duh! But What do you expect from it? What is it that makes a clean and organized home so exceptional? Why not just leave everything as it is?

Here are the main questions and answers that you need to know:

  • Question: Why do I want to declutter?
    Answer: I want to free up space, time, money, and energy.

  • Question: What are the short-term benefits I expect after decluttering?
    Answer: I’ll be left with a tidy, clean, and organized home, that I can enjoy more.

  • Question: What are the long-term benefits?
    Answer: I will learn to value the existing possessions that are important to me more and reduce accumulating stuff that will clutter up my life again

Keep these Q&As in mind to never lose track of your goal whenever you feel overwhelmed by your mess.

Those are your “whys” to your actions, and they will definitely boost your motivation to declutter your home and your life!


One of the secrets of successful people is envisioning their triumphs. They imagine that they break new records, earn millions of dollars, or become the next president even before they reach their goals.

For decluttering, you need to do that as well. Imagine yourself sitting in your clutter-free living room and enjoying the company without feeling awkward due to your mess.

Imagine how much more beautiful, uncomplicated, and calmer your life would be without drowning in your stuff.

When you cannot imagine that at all, have a look at images of clean and decluttered spaces. You can find tons of those on Pinterest.

Sounds cheesy to you? Perhaps, but having a picture of what you want to achieve will get you excited, and decluttering will give you purpose.


Now that you have a clear picture of your future uncluttered living room, bedroom, or kitchen in mind, you can work on strengthening your mindset.

We often self-sabotage ourselves with negative thoughts and doubts, mostly before even getting started.

Our mind is often our worst enemy, and the following thoughts can prevent us from moving toward our original goal, which is to create a clutter-free life.

Those thoughts would sound like this:

  • “I can’t do this!”

  • “It takes too much work!”

  • “It takes too much time!”

  • “Why do I have to do this alone!”

  • “I need all this stuff, I can’t just throw them away!”

  • “What if I need it in the future? I better keep it!”

  • “I’ll have to do it again and again? Nah, just leave it!”

To eliminate all doubts and negativism, try to counter-engineer your thoughts by telling yourself:

  •  “I know it will take work, but the rewards are huge!”

  • “I can do this, this is easy peasy!”

  • “Stuff that has just been collecting dust, are free to go!”

  • “I don’t have to do everything at once. It will take as long as it takes!”

  • “Finally, I’ll be able to invite people over!”

  • “A clutter-free home means a clearer mind!”

  • “I am an organized person!”

Practice this to boost your decluttering mindset, and you’ll get started with ease in no time!


The next step is setting a decluttering goal. It will make it so much easier to follow your path and track your progress.

Think of it like having a map to find your way from point A (your messy home) to point B (your clutter-free home).

Remember that you don’t have to do every room in one day. Unless you only have a tiny room to declutter, it will take days, weeks, or maybe months to get done. And that is totally fine! No one is stressing you!

The main point is to set a goal and start. Everything else will come with ease.

For example, you can set the goal to declutter your entire home by the end of this year. Or you can set mini-goals, beginning with one room, and then move on to the next.

Whatever suits you best. Don’t be too easy nor too harsh with yourself.

Set realistic goals that you will be able to reach.


Before paring down your stuff, help yourself with writing down a plan and scheduling your times for decluttering.

It’s so easy to lose track of where you have started and what to do next. But your time plan will guide you from beginning to the end.

It doesn’t have to be a sophisticated list of every single thing you want to discard. It’s enough to write down the milestones and follow your way through the plan.

Plus, follow a fixed scheduling time. That will build your decluttering habit, and over time it will be a part of your daily routine.

I, for example, have developed the daily habit of clearing my mess before going to bed, often even while brushing my teeth, and I honestly enjoy it. It makes me even sleep better.

And I love to wake up in a tidy home. Sticking to my decluttering habit makes my mornings so much more enjoyable.


Sometimes the feeling of overwhelm can strike back. Especially when you are just getting started, and you don’t see much progress, doubts and negativeness can stop you from reaching your goals.

You clear more and more stuff, but it seems as if the massive pile of clothes and things doesn’t get any smaller.

But it does, it always does!

Now you need to stay consistent. And a great way is to remind yourself why you’re doing it and remember the benefits of a clutter-free space.

When it gets tough, keep these words in mind:

  • “I see the picture of me standing in my clutter-free home and enjoying a calm mind. I can do this!”

  • “When I’m done, I’ll have more space, time, and energy.”

  • “A clutter-free home will make my life a lot easier and bring me more happiness!”

  • “Finally, I can invite my friends over!”


You have a variety of options on how to get your home clutter-free. You can start decluttering the largest space, or the smallest, or the one with the most or the least chaos. You can start with your garage or even your car.

Either way, as you know by now, the most important thing is to start somewhere.

However, I prefer and suggest to start small and get used to the process first before jumping on the more challenging tasks.

Starting small will build your confidence and make it easier to make use of gaining momentum to continue and profit from the so-called snowball effect (more and more snowballs grow into a massive snowball).


If you work effectively with a timer, why not use it for decluttering?

It makes sense to time your process, like during a work-out. Use a timer and set a motivating alarm signal when the time is over to make it more fun.

Why? Because you will more likely commit to the task ahead of you when you know exactly how much time it will take. Plus, you will work more efficiently.

In the beginning, you will naturally take more time, let’s say an hour or two a day to organize your stuff. Over time, as you will have fewer possessions, the time needed will decrease.

Then, maybe you’ll need only 5 minutes a day free for decluttering like I do while brushing my teeth 😉


Once you accomplish a smaller goal, like decluttering one small part of a room, keep it that way. Use it as a motivator to copy that tidiness to other parts of your home.

By starting small, you can create more and more clutter-free zones and keep going until your entire home is as clutter-free as planned.

Even small changes can make a big difference and help keep you motivated.


If you get stuck on the way and the feeling of overwhelm creeps in again, motivate yourself by throwing a party for your friends or family.


You’ll want to show them your home from the best side possible when they come over. So you better clean up!

Enjoy their comments like: “Hey, your crib looks so fresh and so clean!” or “Wow, your place looks more spacious! What did you do?”.

Don’t worry about clearing up the mess afterward. First, you’ll have less stuff to clear up anyway. Second, you can always ask someone to help you before leaving 😉


Another great way to maintain your motivation to declutter is to reward your hard work and effort with small treats in addition to the reward you reap when creating a simpler home and life.

 While it might be tempting to treat yourself with material things, it’s better to find memorable experiences instead.

Have dinner in your favorite restaurant, go to the cinema, or enjoy an ice cream once in a while. You deserve it!

As you’ll have more time for more important things when having less clutter, you can treat yourself even more frequently with more fun experiences.

With that in mind, it works like an effective ecosystem.



One of the best ways to pave your path to a clutter-free home more effectively and with more motivation is to learn from others who already live clutter-free, or finding a decluttering buddy.

Someone who already has achieved your goal can be a kind of mentor who gives you practical tips along the way. That person can guide you through the transformation and motivate you when you feel lost.

If you don’t have that mentor or idol, you find an accountability partner. Remember when you started going to school and met your first friend? That friend made the classes much more fun and easier to go through, right?

Same with your decluttering buddy. Figure out a plan and follow it together. You’ll then both profit from one another.


It’s easy to get demotivated by the effort you are putting into simplifying your home and life. You sometimes forget how much you have already achieved while doing so.

That’s why it’s always a good idea to track your progress by writing them down, either in a journal or you can note them in your schedule.

Make sure to appreciate your milestones and reward yourself for your effort. It is quite fulfilling and motivating to see new achievements written down on a piece of paper.


This may be one of the most important but underrated points of all. Nobody said that decluttering has to be a pain in the ass all along! It can be loads of fun!


By finding ways to make it more enjoyable! You are most likely to finish a task when you enjoy the process.

So put on your favorite music, turn up the volume, and sing and dance while getting rid of your unnecessary stuff!

If you enjoy listening to podcasts or watching comedy shows, why not use them as partners while decluttering? Find anything that you can use as a motivator, and you’ll see that time will fly by.


Once you have achieved your goal, you can breathe and enjoy your accomplishment. Bravo, you did it!

But not forever! Things will definitely continue to come into your life. You’ll get gifts and buy new stuff because things get old or broken. That’s just the way it’s ok.

To avoid filling up your home again, make decluttering a habit. Now that you have taken care of the big mess, you take a few minutes a day to organize your things.

As I said, I do it in the evenings, and it doesn’t bother me at all. It feels even quite meditative, and waking up in an organized space feels fantastic


Decluttering can be a pain, but all of us have to practice it once in a while.

Using the motivation hacks above will make the process much more effortless and even more enjoyable for you.

Quit the mindless consumerism and use your goal as a driving motivation, and you’ll be alright.

You cannot stop things coming into your home forever, but you can choose intentionally what to keep and what to ditch.

Remember that collecting useless stuff is pointless and will only cause a mess.

That’s why I love the minimalist lifestyle. Being aware of what I really need, and by consuming less, my home rarely gets messy. As a result, I enjoy more space, time, and the freedom to do whatever suits me.

And if you want, you can have that too 🙂

So, improve your life starting today and create a clutter-free environment!

Ray Arya

Ray is a frugal minimalist who loves to travel and live in his self-converted camper van. He writes about the benefits of downsizing, decluttering, saving money, building wealth, and the freedom that results from the power of less. Minimalray.com is for everyone who seeks a meaningful life and is committed to contentment.

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