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When clutter clashes: Navigating the messy intersection of relationships and decluttering

Apr 07, 2024

Are you feeling frustrated, overwhelmed, or even angry because your partner won’t help you declutter?

You're not alone. I’ve seen firsthand how clutter can strain relationships, affecting mental, physical, and financial health. Let’s explore the costs of clutter and how you can work with your partner to find a path through the mess.

The cost of clutter


Clutter isn’t just physical; it’s psychological. Living in a cluttered space can significantly increase stress levels, leading to frustration and resentment, especially if one partner doesn’t see the problem. This stress can strain your relationship, making it hard to enjoy time together at home.


The physical toll of navigating through clutter can’t be overstated. From tripping over items to the exhaustion from constantly moving things around, the risk of injury and the drain on your energy are real concerns. It also can impede your ability to relax and recharge at home, impacting your overall well-being.


Financially, clutter represents wasted resources. Items that are no longer needed or used could be sold or donated, but instead, they take up valuable space. Moreover, buying duplicates because you can’t find what you already own adds unnecessary expenses.

Lost Space and Time:

Clutter steals not just space but time. The hours spent cleaning or searching for items could be invested in activities you enjoy, alone or as a couple. This loss can lead to resentment, especially if the burden of decluttering falls on one partner.

Bridging the divide:

So, how do you get your partner on board with decluttering?

Here are some strategies:

Communicate Openly:

Start with an honest conversation about how the clutter affects you. Focus on expressing your feelings using “I” statements rather than blaming. Explain the mental, physical, financial, and time costs you’re experiencing.

Educate Together:

Share resources that highlight the impacts of clutter. Watching my reels and looking through my "learn" story highlights together can help your partner understand the broader effects of clutter on well-being and relationships.

Set Shared Goals:

Discuss what you both want your living space to look like. Setting shared goals can make decluttering feel like a team effort rather than a chore.

Start Small:

Tackle a small, manageable area first. Success in a small area can motivate both of you to take on more.

Respect Differences:

Understand that your partner may have a higher tolerance for clutter. Discuss what level of clutter is acceptable for both of you and try to find a compromise.

Seek External Support:

Sometimes, bringing in a neutral third party, like a professional organizer or a counsellor, can provide the momentum needed to start decluttering together.

Celebrate Progress:

Acknowledge and celebrate progress, no matter how small. This reinforces the positive aspects of decluttering together.

Remember, decluttering together is not just about cleaning up; it’s about caring for each other and your shared environment. By understanding and addressing the costs of clutter, and finding a way to work together, you can strengthen your relationship and create a more peaceful, enjoyable home.

xo Meg

Read through all of the steps above. Then start organizing an area of your home. Scroll down for products to help you get the job done!
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