Moms: Got 5 minutes? Try these quick declutter tips

In the time you can brush your teeth twice or watch a quarter of your favorite sitcom, you can also declutter. With just five minutes on the clock, you can have a cleaner car interior, a more organized closet, a neater desk–even a tidier handbag.


As moms, finding the time to get organized can feel more overwhelming than helping your child with his long-division homework. The good news is, if you can find just five minutes in your day, you can declutter. If you’re ready to purge, set your timer and go for it! Maybe you’ll even have a few seconds left to spare.

Your car

CarIt’s been estimated that the average person spends as many as 100 hours per year in the car. And moms, you can probably double that number! From carpooling to shuttling your kids between sporting events and birthday parties, it’s no surprise that your vehicle accumulates a lot of junk.

Grab a trash bag and clear out all the garbage — don’t forget to look in the glove compartment and other areas where many things literally go to die. (Juice boxes, food wrappers or Cheerios, anyone?)

For the things you need for your child during car rides (long and short), get a container or canvas bag and stash them there. Once you arrive at your destination, toss everything back in and store behind the seat or in the trunk. It can be your little secret!

Your closet

Set the timer and pull the closet doors open. In only five minutes, you can get rid of the clothes, shoes and accessories that aren’t being worn. Warning: this won’t work unless you adopt an “everything must go” attitude.

Follow these rules: If it hasn’t been worn in a year, it goes. If it no longer fits, it goes. If it’s irreparable, it goes.

Next, either donate or toss these items in the trash. The end result? A less cluttered closet, but possibly a heavy heart as you mourn your favorite pre-mom jean jacket from the eighties.

How to put your closet on a diet >>


Your desk

Is your desk covered in piles of paper — everything from your child’s drawing that you promised you’d hang up to last month’s electric bill that you promised you’d file? Are the drawers filled with odds and ends (maybe even more odds than ends)?

Remember: a desk should be a place to support your work, not distract you from it.

Get some stackable containers and separate your papers into categories such as to-do and to-file. Also put the your child’s artwork in a container and when you can find five more minutes, buy a corkboard or a frame and put it on display. It will make both you and your child happy.

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Your handbag

HandbagWhat’s the oddest thing you’ve ever found in your purse? A sock? A sippy cup? If you’re like many moms, you marvel at how much junk ends up there. And it’s not just yours, but also your child’s. First thing to tackle? Your wallet. Dump all scraps of paper you don’t need — valet tickets, dry cleaning stubs, etc. — and file those you do, like important receipts. Cut up any old credit or store cards. And make a commitment to finally use those gift cards! Next, toss any trash within your purse and remove anything that you can’t provide a good argument for why it should be there (like that sock!). Lastly, wipe down the bottom of your bag with an antibacterial wipe (because when was the last time you did that?).

More on getting organized

Get organized for the New Year
6 Secrets of organized moms
Real moms share their organization tips


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