20 Ways To Declutter For The Holidays

Every holiday season, I remember how quickly clutter piles up. It is funny because it just happens so quickly.

With events, celebrations, and all the other things that go into this time of year, things pile up. 

After last holiday season, I realized that I don’t need to let the clutter pile up. I can declutter for the holidays by simply clearing space for things I want to do. For events I want to participate in. And for down time with my family. 

I am encouraging you to spend time decluttering for the holidays with these 20 ways. Pick a few or try to declutter all these areas. 

No matter what you decide, you will feel lighter because you let go of the clutter.

Start With Food

Thanksgiving and Christmas/Hanukkah/winter break time involves a lot of food. So take time to declutter your food in your pantry, fridge, freezer, and anywhere else you have food stored. 

Go through each food area of your home. Remove the food and clean the area the food was in.

As you start putting the food back, only select the food items that your family eats.

Create a pile of food that you can donate to a local food bank. That means food that is not expired and not opened. 

The remaining food can be given to neighbors or used to create a dish to share at your next holiday meal. If you have snack packs, put them outside for your delivery person to grab. 

Don’t waste the food you have, but find ways to share it with others.


Focus On What You Actually Wear

With so many events this time of year, you want to keep your closet tidy. And to do that you need to declutter the things you wear.

Stop holding onto clothing that you no longer love. The pieces you do not feel good wearing should be decluttered. So let them go.

Remove everything from your closet. Clean the entire space. Only pick up and hang back up the clothing you actually wear. Let the remaining items stay on your bed or floor. 

Once you are certain you put away the clothing you wear, decide on the remaining pieces of clothing. I suggest making outfits to ensure you will actually wear what you are putting back in your closet.

If you need more help, check out the resources below:

20 Ways Of Organizing Clothing In Closets

A Step-By-Step Guide To Creating A Minimalist Closet

The Closet Clean-Out :: Step By Step Guide For Organizing Your Clothes

color-coordinated closet using Elfa system

Winter Gear

The seasons are changing, which means it is time to declutter your winter gear.

This is the time of year I go through winter jackets, hats, boots, snow pants, gloves, etc. for me and the kids.

I want to make sure that everything we have fits. There is nothing worse than the first snow hitting the ground and you not being able to walk outside because your boots don’t fit.

How To Organize Your Family’s Jackets

How To Declutter All Your Shoes

What Are You Reading?

One thing I love to gift is books. And not always new books. A lot of books I gift I have already read. 

So if you are looking for good gift ideas, think of all the books you have read that are sitting on your bookshelf. Gift those books to someone who would enjoy reading it.

You can make room on your shelves for new items you are going to get. 

So declutter your books before the holidays. And give the gift of reading!

rainbow books on bookshelf

Declutter The Junk Mail

The holiday season is the best time to unsubscribe from those emails you never open from companies you don’t want in your inbox anymore.

Sometimes I might buy a product for a company and give them my email address so I can get a coupon code. If I am not seeing anymore deals in their emails, I will unsubscribe from those emails. 

So this is the time to find out which lists you are on, so you can remove yourself if you don’t want them cluttering up your inbox.

Whenever a new email pops up from a company I don’t shop with anymore, I just go into that email and unsubscribe.

It keeps my email clutter to a minimum. 

Stop The Gifts

I love toys for the kids. But with so many family members asking what to buy them, I needed another way to tackle that clutter. So we started stopping the gifts. And focused more on experiences. 

When we plan for more experiences, the kids end up enjoying so many opportunities they would never had had if we just gave toys. 

So stop the clutter and give the gift of experiences. This list is the perfect one with tons of ideas: 2021 Holiday Gift Guide For Kids

Get Yourself Prepared

Tis the season for everyone to get sick. So make sure you are prepared. 

I always love checking all the expiration dates on our “sick” medicines.

Then make a quick pick-up of all the items that you need to replace. When we do this, I never fear not having things on hand when someone starts to get the sniffles.

holiday items in clear bins with labels for holidays, halloween, hanukkah and presents

What You Decorate With

I feel like this is an obvious one this time of year. All the holiday items you aren’t using can probably be decluttered. 

So use this time to part with holiday decor you don’t use. 

I do a big declutter as I am decorating. I start with emptying the bins the holiday items are in. Then I will decorate the house. Then any remaining item I will decide if it is worth saving. If it is, I put it back in my holiday box. If not, I can donate or sell.

Then as I clean up after the holiday is over, I can do another declutter. Since I am sick of seeing all the decor pieces. It makes it easy to decide what to keep and what to part with. Because you have looked at it the entire holiday season!

I have some tips on how to store holiday decor below:

How To Declutter For The Holidays

How To Store Holiday Decorations The KonMari Way

Easy Ways To Organize Your Home For The Holiday Season

wine bottle next to canisters on cutting board in kitchen on countertop

Stop The Piles

This is your reminder to declutter the papers before you start your holiday festivities.


Because when papers pile up you are more likely to miss a bill or important notice. 

So stop paper from piling up and start tackling that clutter now.


Refresh Your Make-Up

Just like clothes, make-up should be decluttered.

The eye shadow you never wear can be thrown away. Mascara has a shelf life. So make sure you replace if needed.

I love this guide from Real Simple and use it with my make-up. I add a sticker or just write on the bottom of the container with the date I bought it.

Craft Supplies

My kids love making handmade gifts. So our craft supplies can get out of control. 

Before we even start with the crafting, I do a big declutter of all the supplies. 

I remove everything from our art cart. And only put back things that the kids will use. Everything else is garbage. 

Then the kids can create gifts for our family with the supplies that are on the cart.

bins with toys stored in IKEA kallax shelving unit turned on its side

Get The Kids Involved

This is the best time of year to declutter those toys. 

It is easy with the help of the kids because they know new presents are coming. 

So use this time to declutter the toys. 

Set a timer and dump out a bin or two. For younger kiddos, I recommend one bin at a time. For older kiddos, you can do a few. 

Have the kids find their favorite toys. Those should go in the bins. 

If they see a toy they are done playing with, they can hand to you. All the toys that are left can be donated or sold. 

All the money we make from selling toys goes to the kids. They like being able to buy new toys, which makes selling their old toys easier.

Too Many Toys? How You Can Declutter Easily

How Much Is Too Much When It Comes To Toys?

Get Your Kids To Clean Up Toys

Say No

The holidays always have events we dread attending.

As an introvert, I like time by myself. At home. Mostly alone.

But there are things we have to attend. There are things we want to attend. And there are things we can not attend.

So this is your reminder that is okay to say no to things. Clear your calendar. And keep your schedule as decluttered as you possibly can.

planner pages

Schedule Appointments

Your mental health needs to take a priority so as you declutter your calendar, make sure you schedule appointments for yourself.

Schedule those doctors appointments or dentist appointments you have been putting off.

Start the new year off right with these appointments already completed. 


Declutter The Drama

Do not take part in the drama that can happen during the holiday season.

Instead, remove yourself. 

The effort and stress that comes with drama is not worth your time this year. So make a plan to declutter that drama and enjoy the holidays.

Check Your Bank Account

Declutter your debt by making a plan before you buy anything. 

Start by writing down all the money you need to pay off. I start with credit card bills and loans. 

Include your monthly payment for each of the debt you have.

Then write down how much you bring in each month. Along with writing down other monthly expenses. 

You can figure out how much money you can budget to buy gifts and attend events while still paying off you debt. Because decluttering your debt is something everyone should declutter!

The Organizing Mama writing labels on Post It notes

Mental Clutter

Mental clutter is something that can build up quickly.

So make sure you have some things in place to clear that mental clutter.

I personally like mediating. I use my Peloton app for mediations. And I journal every day. Set a timer for 5 minutes and just write. Every day. It helps you clear mental clutter by getting the thoughts out of your head and onto paper. So your brain can let it go. 

My 5 Tips For Clearing Mental Clutter is a great resource to help you tackle mental clutter.

What Does Your Day Look Like

Creating a routine that works for you is going to help you declutter your schedule, appointments, and mental clutter.


When you have a set routine for your day, your brain is able to process more information easier. So having a routine that is similar in the morning and before bed allows your brain to process information that you took in all day.

And with so many things happening, you want to ensure that your brain can recharge daily. 

My morning routine looks something like this:

  • Wake up
  • Mediation on Peloton app
  • Journal
  • Open blinds
  • Make coffee
  • Wake up kids

This also helps with the kids. If they are structured routines, they are going to be less crabby, less anxious, and more patient because they know what is coming next.

I have more ideas on routines below:

How To Create A Schedule For Stay-At-Home Moms

Step By Step Tutorial For Creating A Kids’ Morning Routine Checklist

Daily Schedules and Routines for Kids

kitchen countertop with cooking utensils in canister

Love Where You Dwell

Declutter your stuff. Your physical stuff. 

Start removing things you don’t love, use, or need. Everything else can go.

Donate or sell those items.

Spend time each day doing tiny decluttering sessions so you aren’t overwhelmed with everything that you plan to declutter.

Use my free declutter checklist to help you stay on track:


Stop This Now

When you are decluttering everything, you also need to stop and declutter your guilt.

With everything we see on social media, you need to let go of this idea that your holiday activities need to always be “picture perfect”.

Stop feeling guilty for things you didn’t do.

Forgot to move that Elf? No biggie. Move it later. 

Not making gingerbread houses? Who cares. It makes a giant mess anyway!

Declutter that guilt you have around making the holidays special. And just enjoy being with your family. That is what they will remember!

writing down meals on planner

Declutter For Holidays

This holiday season, make sure you declutter things that you aren’t finding useful.

That includes your calendar, mental clutter, drama, and guilt. 

Create a calming space by decluttering your physical space. 

And enjoy yourself this holiday season!

The post 20 Ways To Declutter For The Holidays appeared first on The Organized Mama.