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15 Quick 15-Minute Decluttering Projects to Get You Started (And Keep You Motivated)

Decluttering. Just hearing the word makes you feel…ughhhh. 

You know you need to do it, but where do you even start? Maybe you’ve tried before, only to get overwhelmed and give up halfway. Or perhaps you keep telling yourself you’ll do it “tomorrow,” but somehow tomorrow never comes. Well, guess what? It’s time to break the cycle. 

Don’t worry. You don’t need to spend hours cleaning to see a difference. In fact, all you need is 15 minutes. 

Yes, really. Fifteen minutes of focused effort can transform your space and your mindset. 

Imagine opening your junk drawer without a mini heart attack, or finding your desk ready for productivity instead of chaos. Sounds good, right? Let’s dive into these quick and easy decluttering projects that will get you started and keep you motivated. Because you deserve a clutter-free life, one quarter-hour at a time.

1. Clear the Junk Drawer

Alright, it’s time to face the beast: the junk drawer. You know, that black hole where random items go to die.

Dump everything out, sort through the chaos, and only keep what you actually need. Fifteen minutes later, you’ll feel like a champion. And hey, you might even find that missing tape measure.

2. Organize Your Desk

Your desk should be a place of productivity, not a cluttered mess. Spend just 15 minutes clearing away those unnecessary papers and random pens.

Toss what you don’t need and keep only the essentials. By the end of it, you’ll have a clean, inviting workspace. Suddenly, working feels a bit more doable, doesn’t it?

3. Declutter Your Nightstand

Your nightstand shouldn’t look like a disaster zone. Take a quick 15 minutes to clear off old books, glasses, and random items.

Keep only what you need for a peaceful night’s sleep. You’ll be amazed at how much better your room feels. Plus, no more knocking over water glasses in the middle of the night.

4. Tidy up Your Bathroom Counter

Bathroom counters are a magnet for clutter. Spend just 15 minutes getting rid of expired products and organizing your toiletries.

You’ll be surprised at how much space you reclaim. And, let’s be real, it’s way easier to find your toothbrush when it’s not buried under a pile of stuff. Enjoy the newfound order.

5. Sort Through Mail Pile

Mail piles up faster than you think. Take 15 minutes to sift through it, discarding junk mail and organizing important documents.

It’s quick, and you’ll instantly feel more on top of things. No more missing that bill because it got lost in the mess…efficient and satisfying.

6. Rearrange Your Bookshelf

Bookshelves can get chaotic in no time. In just 15 minutes, you can donate books you no longer read and organize the rest by category or color.

It’s a simple task that makes a big difference. Your shelf will look great, and you’ll have an easier time finding your favorite reads. Win-win.

7. Clean out the Fridge

A cluttered fridge is a recipe for waste. Spend 15 minutes tossing expired food and wiping down the shelves. You’ll create space and make it easier to find what you need. Plus, your fridge will look way less like a science experiment. Quick, easy, and totally worth it.

8. Declutter Your Car

Your car shouldn’t double as a storage unit. Take 15 minutes to remove trash and unnecessary items. It’s a small effort that makes a big difference. Driving becomes so much more pleasant without the clutter. And, finding your sunglasses when you need them? Priceless.

9. Organize the Pantry

Pantries can get out of hand quickly. Spend 15 minutes checking expiration dates, disposing of old items, and grouping similar products together. You’ll find what you need faster and save money by not buying duplicates. It’s a simple task with a big payoff. Your future self will thank you.

10. Tidy up Your Closet Floor

The closet floor isn’t a dumping ground. Take 15 minutes to put shoes back in place and remove any random items. Your closet will look more organized, and you’ll actually be able to find things. This is a quick fix that feels incredibly rewarding. Trust me, it’s worth it.

11. Sort Through Underwear/Sock Drawer

Drawers overflowing with mismatched socks and worn-out underwear are annoying. Spend 15 minutes discarding old items and neatly folding the rest.

You’ll save time getting dressed and feel more organized. Plus, it’s nice not to have to dig for a matching pair of socks. Simple, yet effective.

12. Clean up Your Coffee Table

Coffee tables are clutter magnets. Take 15 minutes to remove old magazines, cups, and random objects. Your living room will instantly feel more put-together. And hey, now there’s actually space for your coffee. It’s a small effort that makes a big difference.

13. Clear the Entryway

First impressions start at the entryway. Spend 15 minutes organizing shoes, coats, and bags, and remove anything that doesn’t belong. It’s a quick task that makes your home feel more welcoming. Also, you’ll stop tripping over shoes every time you walk in. Easy and impactful.

14. Tidy up Your Makeup Collection

Makeup collections can get messy fast. Spend 15 minutes discarding expired products and organizing the rest. You’ll save time getting ready and feel more put-together. No more digging for that one lipstick. It’s a small task that makes a big difference.

15. Declutter Your Digital Space

Digital clutter is just as bad as physical clutter. Spend 15 minutes deleting old emails or organizing desktop files. You’ll feel more in control and productive. And, it’s nice not having to scroll through endless junk to find what you need. Quick, easy, and refreshing.

Theresa Bedford is a nationally syndicated writer. Her work has been seen on the Associated Press Wire, Blox Digital, and MSN. She writes about productivity, money, and simple living to help people focus on what really matters in life.