Create five piles
When you’re organizing, you should sort everything into five piles: move to another room, donate, give to a specific person, throw away, and, finally, the “marinating” pile. Pack up the marinating items, and label the box with a date that’s six months to a year later. If you never open the box before that date, you can safely discard those items. Try this other five-second trick that banishes clutter.
To make an organizing project go faster:
Create rules about what you’re keeping and what you’re discarding. In your closet, for example, you can decide to give away any clothing that’s not between size x and size y, that’s stained, or that needs to be repaired. With periodicals, you can decide not to keep anything that’s more than a year old. Make sure you check the 11 ways your clothes could be slowly killing you and get rid of them!
It will always take you at least five times longer…
… to sort through a box of personal papers than you think it will. Be sure you know the eight everyday documents you should shred.