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Overwhelming amount of stuff to do

(39 Posts)
FloppyWollop Mon 12-Mar-18 12:29:16

Please be gentle, I don't need anyone being nasty about it. I feel bad enough that it's come to this point.

The whole house needs tidying, the whole house needs decluttering, everything could do with a deep clean after to start fresh. How do I get all of it done? There's stuff everywhere that needs to be put away/stuff to be washed etc.

I can't put things away in the cupboard because theres too much stuff already in there - the cupboard needs clearing out before I can put stuff away - I need space to be able to get everything out to clear the cupboard - I haven't got space because of all the things needing to be put away - I can't put the things away because there's no room in the cupboards.

It's a vicious cycle and no blame can be put on any one person in the house, we all make the mess and we are all reluctant to getup and do it, but something needs to change. We sorted out a lot in the summer but it slipped back to our old ways as I struggled to keep up with the demands of a baby and my DH went back to work. I absolutely will not ask for help from outside whether that's professionals or family/friends as it's our responsibility to sort out.

Can someone please help me work out where to go from here, how to declutter and get back to square one and most importantly how to maintain it? I don't want links to the websites that will help as I find that it only encourages me to further procrastinate😣 thank you!!!!

user1467313952 Mon 12-Mar-18 12:36:50

I wish I could help, but unfortunately I'm also living in the same vicious cycle confused. I thonk I'm just going to be super ruthless and just dump so much stuff. My friend has OCD when it comes to cleanliness and organisation in her house so I'm going to ask her for some advice.

Coconuthusk Mon 12-Mar-18 12:40:53

Be gentle with yourself. You are not the only person in this situation. Thete are lots of decluttering threads on here.

Can I suggest, stop bringing stuff into the house, it's so easy to "just get a new saucepan" or "just one new top" or even a magazine but all these single items create a whole pile of stuff! If you absolutely NEED to bring something in, then make sure you get rid or at least one other item.

Everytime you were going to buy something but didn't put the money into a holiday fund.

The other threads will have lots of suggestions on how to actually tidy/declutter.

It's not just your responsibility though.

Coconuthusk Mon 12-Mar-18 12:41:23

And tgere is nothing wrong with asking for help if you need it. X

moonlight1705 Mon 12-Mar-18 12:43:56

In terms of the cupboards - just do one cupboard at a time. Get three boxes and label them keep, throw or charity.

Put what is in the cupboards into the relevant boxes and then check what else you are trying to put back in. If it doesn't fit in the cupboard then get rid of more things until everything has a home.

Take the throw box directly to the bin and arrange to drop anything off to a charity shop straight away.

mylaptopismylapdog Mon 12-Mar-18 12:47:32

Try and find the thing that irritates you the most and break down what you would have to do to improve the situation, give yourself credit for any progress and just try an do a bit everyday. Look for things that can be delegated to others in the family and plan a treat for yourself as a reward.

Bananabed Mon 12-Mar-18 12:52:26

Don't be too hard on yourself, it's hard to keep up with housework with a new baby.

I would start with one room and use 2 boxes or black bags. One for things to be thrown away (you need to be ruthless) and one with things that need to be kept but can't be put in the cupboard yet.

Once you've done the living room choose one cupboard and clear it out again being ruthless. Repeat alternating between a room and a cupboard.

Our old house used to be a bit of a mess due to lack of storage and a habit of holding onto things. When we moved I spent a bit on more storage but I've really changed my habits. Before I'd shove something in a drawer where's now it's either put away or disposed of.

Makingworkwork Mon 12-Mar-18 12:56:54

Start with one thing at time.

Do you have a hoarding problem? Or are you and DH (it’s hia job too) just struggling to keep on top of stuff since having a baby?

Have you read Kondo books? Maybe read the first.

I would do it one room at a time. So the bathroom or kitchen first or which ever room is causing you the biggest problems.

First chuck out any thing that is obviously rubbish, then move anything that should not be kept in that room, go through your stuff and decide if you still want/need it (do you need duplicates, is it broken etc) and if you don’t want it then bin it or put in a charity bag and get rid of it by the end of the week. Then clean the room to an acceptable standard. I would leave the deep cleaning to the end unless the room really needs it. Then move on the next room.

The biggest tip I can give you is decide but if you want to get rid of stuff but start think what do you actually want to keep and then get rid of the rest.

Makingworkwork Mon 12-Mar-18 12:58:32

Yes to asking for help. I have a cleaner come for 2 hours a week even through my maternity leave.

himalayansalt Mon 12-Mar-18 13:11:49

Which is the worst room? Start there. I would start with the kitchen if it is unhygienic or impossible to cook in.

If not, I would prioritise your main living room. It will just make you feel better to have one reasonable room while you sort out the rest of the house.

So ...

Throw out the rubbish. Recycle the recyling. Open the window. Light a scented candle (bet you've got one somewhere). Get a large box and put anything that's lying around in there that you like and definitely want to keep. Put clean washing that you need to keep but can't put away yet in a washing basket or Ikea blue bag or Sports Direct bag. Put any dirty washing lying around either in the machine or in a laundry basket or directly on top of the laundry basket if there's no room in there.

Get one of those charity bags they put through the door, or a new black bin bag, and put anything in good condition and reusable that you no longer use or want any more in there. If you are short of money you can car boot or sell that. If you are comfortably off it's going to the charity shop. Find out about good car boot or NCT sales in your area and write the date for one about 3 or 4 weeks time in your diary. Your are going to that sale, make a date with dh! If you don't have time for 1 car boot sale then forget about making time to sell individual items one by one, that just won't happen.

Prioritise getting old things off shelves and out of cupboards so that you can put newer stuff that you do need away.

Also prioritise getting stuff off the floor so that you can hoover. A clear, hoovered floor is a hugely cheering sight.

fifipop185 Mon 12-Mar-18 13:17:36

It's so easy to get in to your situation. I started on the room we spent most time in, the living room. I'd try to pick out at least two things for the bin every time I entered the room, and made sure the bags of rubbish / charity left the house that day to stop them building up and adding to the problem.

Once you're clear and clean, it's much easier to keep on top. Friend of mine took a photo of each of her rooms at their worst and stuck them to the fridge to remind her how bad it was and not to go back to old ways. Good luck!

yellowplumpreserves Mon 12-Mar-18 13:19:54

I have had times when I could have written your post. It's so overwhelming. What has been helping me recently has been using a website called She has very manageable ideas and a good 30 day decluttering series on YouTube. I have never managed to do anything from household books/websites before but Infind her style really helpful.

Try not to do too much at once if you can. Better to plan a small manageable task for a day and then do something more if you have time than to attempt something huge and be discouraged.

Lots of women here support each other in this kind of thing. Can you report back from time to time so we can cheer you on.

YesitsJacqueline Mon 12-Mar-18 13:31:19

Do one thing at a time . You can't start cleaning and tidying until you declutter.
Start with this - make 2 piles , rubbish and charity shop . Give yourself a deadline to do that first , it's really important not to get overwhelmed or you will just stop. Make sure you actually take the stuff ( or arrange for it to be collected ) to the charity shop , not like my mum who leaves bags of brick a brack in the hallway for months.
you'll feel a huge weight off your shoulders and a big sense of achievement once you've done this , I promise.
then you can move on with tidying and cleaning .
You can do it !

BrioLover Mon 12-Mar-18 13:32:22

Be kind to yourself about this - it's so easy with a new baby!

I've started using The Organised Mum Method - she has a blog and Insta page. I like her because she aims to ensure you're not doing LOADS each day and it's more manageable.

FloppyWollop Mon 12-Mar-18 14:48:09

Thanks ladies. Reading this was already so helpful. It gave me the 'Yeah let's do this' attitude, but I've got the school run. I'm going to come home and do the washing up and then I think I'll do my big cupboard first as that will clear a lot of the stuff away and I'm already thinking of things that can definitely go! I'll definitely update x

Akire Mon 12-Mar-18 14:50:36

Ive had a major declutter recently. Think I had to come to turns with fact that my house was to small for he amount of stuff I had. No buying of storage items was going make it any better. Had to throw/recycle load of stuff or it was never going to get any better.

Started with storage cupboard to make more room for other sorted things. Still work in progress but you really have to decide if you want a clean clutter free house or all your stuff. You can’t have both!

Umakemefeellikedancing Mon 12-Mar-18 14:52:40

Please please reconsider asking for outside help. There is no shame in it. If you can afford a local cleaner I would highly recommend.

Umakemefeellikedancing Mon 12-Mar-18 14:53:44

Also concentrate on one room at a time.

fifipop185 Mon 12-Mar-18 19:11:44

Well done OP, hope you're making a little progress.

Laucu Mon 12-Mar-18 20:05:15

Agree with pps, don't be hard on yourself!

Do one room at a time, as a pp said one pile for charity and one for rubbish, clear out and then you can put stuff away. A few storage tubs/bags will help and are fairly cheap to pick up.

NoSquirrels Tue 13-Mar-18 14:13:46

I like Clutterbug too, and also A Slob Comes Clean - a couple of her theories have resonated with me, but particularly "the Container Concept". She says once you realise each cupboard, drawer, shelf or room is a container, which has limits to how much it can "contain" then it is easier to throw things away. Your house is a container too. If you try to keep too much in it, you will be stressed and overwhelmed.

So instead of looking at all the things, and thinking "I must keep that, where shall I put it", you start from the opposite direction "This is my bookshelf, I can only keep as many books as fit easily onto the shelf." "This is the baby's toybox, I can only keep what fits", "This is my knicker drawer..." etc.

I struggle with finding a place for everything - but once I'd thought this through about containers, it became easier.

doesthatmakesense Tue 13-Mar-18 14:24:22

I'm a big fly lady fan: start where you are, just do 5 minutes of throwing away- set a timer! Don't let perfectionism get in the way of progress i.e. don't not start because you can't get it all done at once. And well done. You will get there.

BreakfastAtSquiffanys Tue 13-Mar-18 14:26:33

If you are tackling a cupboard full of crap, don't try picking things out to throw away.
Take everything out.
Then decide everything yes everything is going in the bin /recycling/charity APART from special things that you are going to keep (and return to cupboard).
Instead of going through in a negative fashion, trying to pick things to throw away, you'll be going through in a positive way choosing things to keep.
You'll find after a couple of passes through the heap you reach the tipping point of ENOUGH. Everything left IS going out.
Put the saved items away in some sort of order, doesn't have to be perfect.
If you can face it, sort the rejects into Bin or charity. But don't waste too much time on this.
The rejects have to go before you change your mind

QueenOfIce Tue 13-Mar-18 16:35:39

I have a 1 in 1 out policy, if I buy something then it must replace something else if nothing needs replacing and it's not an essential item I don't buy it. Good luck! Once you get going you'll find it much easier.

FloppyWollop Thu 15-Mar-18 15:52:00

Ok so progress is slow due to a teething clingy baby, the huge cupboard is officially clear of crap! Now I'm onto the job of putting the stuff that had been cluttering the lounge, into the cupboard. I have a bag of rubbish and a bag of stuff to give away which will be leaving my house in the morning. I WILL get on top of it. I have diet coke fueling me. Usually I keep things out that I need to use for ongoing projects because 'as soon as I've done this I'll get on with that' but for now it's going away so I can get it completely tidy. I'm making a list of the things I need DH to do that I can't do myself so he knows what he needs to do straight away.

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