Have you noticed the decluttering frenzy that’s been going on for a few years now? Seems like everyone is on the Marie Kondo bandwagon and it doesn’t show signs of slowing down.
Time for homeschool moms to jump on this bandwagon too. But, wait. Why should we do all the work? Decluttering is a life skill and our kids need to know how to do it.
Let’s chat about teaching teens how to declutter. And make sure you grab the FREE printable (scroll down to get it).
Researchers have studied how clutter affects our emotional well-being and say that it contributes to negative mental health, including an elevation in cortisol, the stress hormone. Across the generations, clutter has also been shown to be closely tied to procrastination.
Are your teens unable to work productively in your home or in their room because of the clutter? Many kids who have processing disorders or attention difficulties also struggle with too much stimuli present in their visual surroundings.
Whether your teen struggles with clutter or enjoys their clutter, the art of decluttering is indeed a life skill that should be added to our homeschools.
Here are four top tips to discuss with your teens, then be sure to grab the Declutter Cheatsheet below!
Only Keep What You Actually Use & Love
Many of us keep useless items due to an emotional attachment. It’s important to only keep what we actually use and need. Give your teens permission to get rid of childhood knick-knacks that they no longer use or love. Otherwise, you’ll end up storing these tchotchkes when they move out.
A Place for Everything, and Everything in Its Place
This is wisdom from the ages! But seriously, you can help your teenager by showing them how to find a home for every belonging and then return things to their proper place.
It takes far too much brain power to make a decision about where to place things every time you need to clean up a room. If you’ve already assigned a home for each item, you can tidy a room without decision fatigue.
Keep Horizontal Surfaces Clear
This one simple rule will help even a full room seem decluttered. Find a place for all the stuff on dresser tops, desks, and bedside tables so that you can feel calmer and more productive in your space, even if you haven’t fully decluttered yet.
Follow the One-In One-Out Rule
The researchers also agree that over-buying is a problem, and that much of what we bring into our homes we do not actually need. In order to keep possessions at a manageable level, consider helping your teens adopt the one-in one-out rule.
It’s very simple. If you purchase a new shirt, you need to get rid of one. New pair of sneakers in? Get rid of an old pair. It’s a simple concept, but many of us save our old stuff in case of emergencies, which we don’t actually experience. Can you relate?
To help your teen (or yourself) get a start on decluttering a space, commit some time in the next week to actually going through this Declutter Cheatsheet and lower the stress level in your home!
Then, consider checking out my eBay Reseller Mini Course for Teens. You can use the coupon code DECLUTTER to save $5 off your purchase.
This course will help your teen take items from their decluttering project and list them on eBay to make a profit. Then, it will show them how to do market research and reinvest that money into more items to start a mini-reselling side gig right from home.
It’s the perfect spring break or summer vacation hobby!
Abby is a former public school teacher, now homeschooling her five children. She’s in the trenches just like you and knows it can be challenging to be home with your kids all day while you struggle to keep up with the housework and educate your kids (and maybe even work on the side!). She blogs over at www.4onemore.com and hosts the Homeschool with Moxie podcast.