Decluttering – The 20/20 Rule Explained

Decluttering - The 20/20 Rule

Tidy House, Tidy Mind. You may have heard this phrase a thousand times, but what does it mean, and how can this phrase and the 20/20 rule help you declutter?

There are many psychological reasons why having a tidy house will reduce latent stress and improve mood. However, how can you ensure that your nice tidy house will remain clutter free? By using the 20/20 declutter rule, you can ensure your house and mind stay tidy for life!


Declutter like a Pro...

In order to declutter like a pro, you need to think like a professional. One of the most common methods of decluttering uses a minimalist approach called the 20/20 rule. There’s no complex maths involved, so don’t worry, the 20/20 is just a representation of a concept.

Devised by The Minimalists, Joshua Fields Millburn and Ryan Nicodemus, who believe that clutter is the result of our “just in case” thoughts, their 20/20 rule states that when struggling to choose if an item is worth keeping or letting go, as yourself the following 2 questions;

Can you replace it for less than £20, and can you replace it in less than 20 minutes? If the answer is yes to both of these questions, then get rid of it!

The 20/20 rule gives you an excellent framework and set of questions to ask yourself, which if applied correctly, will result in a tidy home and a tidy mind! Studies have even shown that houses with a lot of clutter are valued a lot less compared to a clean and minimalist home. So if decluttering your house makes it worth more, what are you waiting for?


20/20 Declutter Examples

Although the 20/20 rule won’t work for larger items worth more than £20, it’s a great way to reduce the number of small items around the home that produce 90% of the clutter. Here are some examples of the 20/20 rule in action, and how you can implement it in your home.

Let’s start small. See that kids remote control car you got for them 2 Birthdays ago? Has it been used in the past year and still working? If not, then bin it. It cost less than £20 to buy a new one, and can be had next day from Amazon at the click of a button.

Books. You may be an avid reader, but you can only read Dan Brown books so many times, so get those off to the charity shop for an extra dose of karma.

Mugs? How many do you need? Saving that one for when someone special comes round? Get rid of the excess and only keep what you need. Trust me, it’ll save a lot of dusting and washing further down the line!

That CD collection you’ve been hanging on to? Definitely worth less than £20 a CD, and can be replaced in a matter of seconds by downloading or streaming the music live. So donate those CDs to charity, or get some money for them by selling them online!


Declutter Karma

If you’re still struggling with too much clutter, then take a step back and approach the process from a different angle before attempting the 20/20 rule again.

Before you put a value on your goods, sort them out into 3 separate piles or separate boxes. One for stuff you’re still not sure if you’re keeping or not. One box for items you’re getting rid of, and for that good dose of declutter karma, make the last box for items to go to charity. A classic example of Reduce, Reuse and Recycle! Something we practice here at Purdie Worldwide as part of our growing list of standards.

Start by asking yourself, do I really need this? Have you used it within the last year, or would anyone else benefit from it? If you’ve not used it within the last year, and no one else would benefit from it, then chuck it out!


The Last Option for Decluttering

Tried the 20/20 rule, the Reduce, Reuse and Recycle method, and still can’t bring yourself to get rid of those precious belongings? There is another way! At Purdie Worldwide, we have 2 main types of storage to keep your goods safe, whilst de-cluttering your house at the same time.

If you’d like regular access to your goods, then Self-Storage would be ideal for your needs. Starting at £9/week for a 25ft² unit, you can load and access your goods anytime during work hours. You can even book a self-store tour so you can get an idea of the various sizes we have on offer.

Don’t think you’ll need regular access to your goods? Then Containerised Storage would be best for your needs. You (or you can hire us) can load one of our 250ft³ wooden storage containers, and we load it into our purpose built warehouse for safe keeping! 

Get in touch today for help de-cluttering your home. We’ve even got Door-2-Store trailers which make things even cheaper, and allow you to de-clutter at your own pace! 

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