May 6


Understanding the 2020 Rule: Expert Advice from Professional Organizers on Decluttering

What’s the 2020 rule for decluttering Professional organizers explain

When it comes to decluttering our homes, we are often overwhelmed by the sheer amount of stuff we have. Whether it’s the kitchen cabinets overflowing with coffee mugs or the garage filled with forgotten gadgets, clutter seems to find its way into every nook and cranny. But what if there was a simple rule that could help us tackle this never-ending problem?

Professional organizers Ryan and Joshua, known for their work in decluttering and creating organized spaces, have come up with a strategy called the 2020 rule. In their recently published book, they claim that this rule can help make the decluttering process easier and more effective.

So, what exactly is the 2020 rule? In simple terms, it means that if you haven’t used or worn an item in the last 20 minutes and don’t plan on using it in the next 20 minutes, it’s time to declutter. This rule is designed to help us distinguish between items that we actually need and those that are just taking up space.

For example, let’s say you find yourself in the kitchen, looking through your cabinets. You come across a set of fancy wine glasses that you bought years ago but have never used. According to the 2020 rule, if you haven’t used them in the last 20 minutes and don’t plan on using them in the next 20 minutes, it’s time for them to go.

But what about sentimental items? According to Ryan and Joshua, even sentimental items must pass the 2020 rule. They suggest taking a picture of the item to preserve the memory instead of keeping the physical object. This allows us to declutter our homes while still holding onto the sentimental value.

Another important aspect of the 2020 rule is privacy. Ryan and Joshua advise that if you wouldn’t want someone to see or know about a certain item, then it’s probably time to let it go. This helps us maintain our privacy and declutter our lives at the same time.

In conclusion, the 2020 rule for decluttering is a simple and effective strategy that can help us tackle the clutter in our homes. Whether it’s in the kitchen or the garage, this rule encourages us to question whether we really need the items we own. By implementing this rule, we can create more organized and clutter-free spaces, making our lives happier and more efficient.

What’s the 2020 rule for decluttering

When it comes to decluttering our homes, privacy is often a concern. Professional organizers explain that decluttering can be an emotional and personal process, and it’s not always easy to let go of certain items. However, the 2020 rule for decluttering is designed to help individuals make the most of their space and create a clutter-free environment.

What is the 2020 rule?

The 2020 rule suggests that if you haven’t used or worn an item in the past 20 months, or if you don’t see yourself using or wearing it in the next 20 months, it’s time to let go of it. This rule takes into account the current situation and the specific needs and lifestyle of each individual, making it a flexible and effective strategy for decluttering.

Professional organizers often use this rule in their work with clients, helping them decide what items to keep and what items to part with. By asking themselves whether they will use an item in the next 20 months, people can better evaluate the necessity and value of their belongings.

Why is the 2020 rule effective?

The 2020 rule is effective because it helps individuals focus on the present and future instead of holding onto the past. It encourages people to prioritize the items they truly need and use, rather than keeping things out of sentimental attachment or fear of needing them in the future.

By following the 2020 rule, individuals can simplify their lives and create a more organized and clutter-free space. This can lead to a sense of clarity and calm, making it easier to find things and navigate their homes more efficiently.

How to apply the 2020 rule?

To apply the 2020 rule, start by taking a look at the items in your home. Whether it’s your kitchen, wardrobe, or garden shed, ask yourself whether you’ve used or worn each item in the past 20 months, or if you can see yourself using it in the next 20 months. If the answer is no, it may be time to let it go.

Professional organizers recommend going through this process regularly, not just once. As we go through different times in our lives, our needs and preferences may change, and so will the items we need. Regular decluttering sessions can help to keep things in check and prevent clutter from accumulating.

Remember, the goal is to create an ideal living environment where you have the items you truly need and love, and not be burdened by excess clutter. The 2020 rule is a simple and effective tool to achieve that.

How does the 2020 decluttering rule work

How does the 2020 decluttering rule work

Professional organizers have come up with a strategy known as the “2020 decluttering rule” to help people declutter their homes and make the process more manageable. This rule is all about taking a systematic approach to decluttering and focusing on small, achievable goals.

What’s the 2020 decluttering rule about?

The 2020 decluttering rule is based on the idea that you should only keep items that you use, need, or truly love. It’s a guideline to help you decide whether to keep or get rid of something when decluttering your home.

How does the strategy work?

When using the 2020 decluttering rule, you go through your home and check each item to determine if it meets the criteria of being used, needed, or loved. If it doesn’t, it’s time to let it go.

This strategy is designed to be flexible and can be applied to different areas of your home, such as the kitchen, closets, or even your inbox. By using this rule, you can declutter your spaces in small increments, making the process easier and less overwhelming.

How to apply the 2020 decluttering rule

How to apply the 2020 decluttering rule

Start by choosing an area of your home to declutter. Set a timer for 20 minutes and commit to decluttering for that amount of time. During those 20 minutes, go through your belongings and apply the rule to each item.

For example, if you’re decluttering your kitchen, take a look at all the utensils, gadgets, and cookware. Ask yourself if you use each item regularly or if it’s just taking up space. If you haven’t used it in a while, it might be time to let it go.

Keep in mind that this rule doesn’t mean you have to throw everything away. If something has sentimental value or is something you truly love, it’s okay to keep it. The key is to be intentional about the items you choose to keep and only hang onto those that add value to your life.

Why is the 2020 decluttering rule effective?

The 2020 decluttering rule works because it helps you make deliberate choices about what stays in your home. It forces you to evaluate each item and consider whether it aligns with your current needs and lifestyle.

By using this rule, you can save time, money, and energy by decluttering your home and getting rid of things you no longer use or need. It also helps create an environment that is more conducive to productivity and relaxation, as clutter can often be distracting and overwhelming.

Whether you hire a professional organizer or tackle the decluttering process yourself, the 2020 decluttering rule can be a helpful tool to declutter your home and create a more organized and stress-free living environment.

What do you throw away when decluttering with the 2020 rule

The 2020 rule for decluttering is a simple strategy that can help you get rid of unnecessary items in your home. The rule states that if you haven’t used or worn an item in the past 20 months, and you can’t foresee using it in the next 20 months, it’s time to get rid of it. But what exactly should you throw away when decluttering with this rule?

1. Old clothes and accessories: Take a look at your wardrobe and let go of any clothes or accessories that you haven’t worn in a long time. If you find yourself thinking, “I might wear it someday,” that’s a sign it’s time to let it go.

2. Outdated electronics: We often hold onto old electronics, thinking that we might need them someday. But if you haven’t used a gadget or device in the past 20 months, it’s unlikely you’ll need it in the future. Check if the item is broken or outdated and consider recycling it.

3. Unused kitchen gadgets: Many of us have a collection of kitchen gadgets that we rarely use. Take a closer look at your kitchen and identify the gadgets you haven’t used in the past 20 months. If you can’t remember the last time you used that avocado slicer, it’s probably time to let it go.

4. Paperwork and documents: We often accumulate a lot of paperwork and documents over time. Go through your files and shred or recycle anything that is outdated or no longer relevant. Keep only the essential documents, such as tax records and legal papers.

5. Beauty and skincare products: It’s easy to accumulate a collection of beauty and skincare products that we never use. Check the expiration dates and throw away anything that is expired or that you haven’t used in a long time. Consolidate products and only keep the ones you use regularly.

6. Books and magazines: If you have a pile of books and magazines that you’ve been meaning to read but haven’t gotten around to, it’s time to declutter. Keep only the books that you truly love and plan to read, and donate or sell the rest.

7. Sentimental items: Sentimental items can be difficult to let go of, but they can also contribute to clutter. Be selective about the sentimental items you keep and make sure they hold special meaning to you. Consider taking pictures or creating a memory box to preserve the memories without cluttering your space.

Remember, the 2020 rule is just a guideline, and it may not be suitable for every situation. Use your judgment and apply it where it makes sense in your life. Happy decluttering!

Should I use the 2020 decluttering rule? The pros and cons

When it comes to decluttering and organizing your space, the 2020 rule has been gaining popularity. This strategy, coined by professional organizers, suggests that you should get rid of items that you haven’t used in the past 20 months. But is this rule really effective? Let’s take a look at the pros and cons.

The Pros:

  • Speed up the decluttering process: The 2020 rule provides a clear and straightforward guideline for decluttering. It helps you make quick decisions about what to keep and what to let go, saving you time and effort.
  • Prevent clutter from piling up: By regularly applying the 2020 rule, you can prevent your space from becoming overcrowded with items that you no longer use or need. This can create a cleaner and more organized environment.
  • Free up space: Removing unused items from your home can create more space for the things that truly matter to you. It can make your living area look and feel bigger, providing you with a more comfortable living experience.

The Cons:

  • Too strict for sentimental items: The 2020 rule may not be suitable for items that hold sentimental value or have emotional significance. It can be difficult to let go of things with sentimental attachments, even if they haven’t been used in the past 20 months.
  • Not applicable to all situations: Some items, such as seasonal or occasional use items, may not be used within a 20-month timeframe but are still necessary to keep. For example, kitchen gadgets that are only used for special occasions or gardening tools used during specific seasons.
  • Has a monetary implication: Following the 2020 rule strictly may lead to unnecessary repurchases in the future. You might end up getting rid of items that you will need to buy again, resulting in additional expenditure.

In the end, whether or not you should use the 2020 decluttering rule depends on your individual circumstances and priorities. Professional organizers suggest finding a decluttering strategy that works best for you, taking into account your space, lifestyle, and personal preferences. What matters most is creating a home that is organized and clutter-free, making it easier for you to find what you need and enjoy your living space.

Can the 2020 decluttering rule save me money?

With the 2020 rule for decluttering, the theory is that by getting rid of items you haven’t used in the past year, you can make your life easier, remain organized, and potentially save money in the long run.

It is often thought that clutter can lead to unnecessary spending. When your space is cluttered, it can be difficult to find what you need, leading to buying duplicates or replacements. By decluttering and organizing your home, you can save money by knowing what you already have and not buying unnecessary items.

Joshua Becker, a professional organizer and author, claims that decluttering can help individuals focus on what’s truly important in their lives. By clearing out the excess stuff, you can determine what you truly value and what is just taking up space.

In terms of saving money, clutter can also impact your financial situation. Ryan Nicodemus, another professional organizer, suggests that clutter can lead to overspending and debt. By decluttering, you can reassess your spending habits and make more conscious decisions about what you bring into your home.

Decluttering is not just about getting rid of physical items, but also about letting go of sentimental clutter. Sentimental items can often take up valuable space and hold emotional weight, making it difficult to let go of them. By practicing the 2020 rule and decluttering sentimental items, you can create a more streamlined and peaceful living environment.

By decluttering and organizing your home, you can also save money by avoiding the need for storage solutions or bigger living spaces. If your home is cluttered, you may find yourself considering renting a storage unit or moving into a larger home to accommodate all your belongings. By decluttering, you can utilize the space you already have and potentially save money on rent or storage fees.

When it comes to saving money, the 2020 decluttering rule can be an effective strategy. By decluttering and organizing your home, you can make better decisions about what you truly need and avoid impulse purchases. Creating a clutter-free environment can also provide peace of mind and help you focus on the things that matter most in your life.

So, if you’re wondering whether the 2020 decluttering rule can save you money, the answer is yes, it can. By decluttering your home and creating a more organized space, you can save money on unnecessary purchases, storage solutions, and potentially even housing costs. Take the time to assess your belongings, determine what you truly need, and let go of anything that is cluttering your life.

Where should I start with the 2020 decluttering rule

The 2020 decluttering rule has gained popularity among professional organizers and individuals looking to simplify their lives. The rule proposes that you declutter your home by keeping only items that you find useful or bring you joy. But where should you start with this rule?

Assess sentimental items

One important aspect of the 2020 decluttering rule is assessing sentimental items. Many people struggle to let go of items that hold sentimental value, even if they no longer serve a purpose in their lives. Consider whether those sentimental items are truly necessary and if they contribute to your overall happiness and well-being.

Start small and work your way up

Start small and work your way up

It’s often easier to begin decluttering in small spaces such as a drawer or a shelf, rather than tackling an entire room at once. This theory is based on the idea that once you see progress in one area, you’ll feel motivated to continue decluttering in other spaces.

Use the 2020 rule in different areas of your home

The 2020 decluttering rule can be applied to any area of your home. Start with the kitchen, for example, and get rid of any items that you no longer use or need. Look for duplicates or items that are slowly taking over your precious space.

Once you’ve decluttered a smaller area, move on to bigger rooms such as the living room or bedroom. The goal is to create an environment that promotes clarity and reduces visual clutter, making your home a more peaceful and organized space.

Consider the 20-minute rule

If you’re feeling overwhelmed or finding it difficult to get started, consider using the 20-minute rule. Set a timer for 20 minutes and commit to decluttering during that time. You’ll be surprised at how much you can accomplish in a short period. This strategy is particularly effective for those with busy schedules or limited time.

Donate or sell unwanted items

As you declutter, you’ll likely come across items that are in good condition but no longer serve a purpose in your life. Consider donating them to a local charity or selling them online to make some extra money. By giving these items a new life, you’re not only decluttering your space but also contributing to a more sustainable lifestyle.

In conclusion, the 2020 decluttering rule provides a simple and effective strategy for tackling cluttered spaces in your home. By assessing sentimental items, starting small and working your way up, and using the 20-minute rule, you can make significant progress in decluttering your living space. Remember to donate or sell unwanted items to give them a chance to find a new home and continue to bring joy to someone else’s life.

How does decluttering with the 2020 rule help

Decluttering with the 2020 rule is a strategy that can greatly improve your life. When our physical space is cluttered, it often reflects the clutter we also have in our minds. Taking the time to declutter our surroundings can help us feel more organized, focused, and at peace.

The 2020 rule is simple: for every item you own, ask yourself whether you have used it in the past 20 days or whether you will use it in the next 20 days. If the answer is no, it’s time to let go of that item.

The theory behind the 2020 rule

The 2020 rule was first introduced by professional organizer Joshua Becker and further popularized by Ryan Nicodemus and Joshua Fields Millburn, known as “The Minimalists”. The theory is that when we own fewer items, we have less to take care of, organize, and store. This allows us to have more time and space to focus on the things that truly matter in our lives.

By decluttering and removing items we don’t use or need, we create a more ideal living environment. This can lead to increased productivity, reduced stress, and even better physical and mental health.

How does the 2020 rule work?

To declutter using the 2020 rule, start by picking a specific area, such as your kitchen or your wardrobe. Go through each item and ask yourself the 20/20 questions: ‘Have I used this item in the past 20 days?’ and ‘Will I use it in the next 20 days?’

If the answer is no, consider letting go of the item. This can mean donating, selling, or simply discarding it, depending on the condition and value of the item.

It’s important to note that the 2020 rule doesn’t apply to items with sentimental value. Those items should be evaluated based on their emotional significance, rather than their practical use.

Benefits of decluttering with the 2020 rule

Decluttering with the 2020 rule can have several benefits:

  • Less clutter: By regularly assessing your belongings, you can prevent your space from becoming cluttered.
  • More space: Removing unnecessary items will free up space in your home, making it easier to find and store the things you truly need.
  • Efficiency: With fewer items, you can speed up your daily routines and keep your living spaces clean and organized.
  • Prioritization: By letting go of things you don’t use, you can focus on the items and activities that bring you joy and fulfillment.
  • Peace of mind: Living in a clutter-free environment can promote a sense of peace, relaxation, and well-being.

So if you find yourself in a cluttered situation and don’t know where to start, try using the 2020 rule as a decluttering strategy. It can help you take control of your belongings, simplify your life, and create a more peaceful and organized living space.

Should I organize or declutter first

When it comes to decluttering and organizing, many people wonder whether they should tackle the decluttering first or focus on organizing their belongings. There are different schools of thought on this matter, but the general consensus among professional organizers is that it’s usually more effective to declutter before organizing.

Decluttering first

Decluttering involves getting rid of items that you no longer need or use. This could be anything from clothes and household items to sentimental belongings. When you declutter first, you create more space and make it easier to organize the remaining items. Decluttering can also help you identify the items that you actually need and use, and it allows you to let go of the things that are no longer serving a purpose in your life.

Professional organizer Joshua Ryan, author of the book “Cluttered Mess to Organized Success”, recommends starting with decluttering because it helps you to see what you have and what you need to work with. Once you have decluttered, it’s easier to determine the best way to organize the items that remain.

Organizing second

After decluttering, organizing becomes a much simpler task. With fewer items to organize, you can focus on finding the right place for everything and creating systems that work for you. Organizing can involve categorizing items, finding storage solutions, and creating a more functional layout for your space.

Professional organizers often suggest organizing items in a way that makes them easily accessible and helps you find what you need when you need it. This could be using clear storage containers, labeling shelves and drawers, or arranging items based on how often you use them. The ultimate goal of organizing is to create a clutter-free and functional home, where everything has its place.

The 2020 Rule

One popular strategy that has gained attention recently is the 2020 rule. This rule, introduced by professional organizer Marie Kondo, suggests that you should only keep items that spark joy or that you’ve used in the past year. By applying this rule, you can declutter your home and keep only the items that are truly meaningful and useful to you.

However, it’s important to remember that organizing and decluttering are ongoing processes. As our needs and preferences change over time, so does our stuff. What may have once sparked joy may no longer do so, and what was once useful may now be outdated. Regularly reassessing your belongings and decluttering as needed can help you maintain a clutter-free and organized home.

So, whether you choose to declutter first or organize first, the key is to find a strategy that works for you and helps you create a space that supports your needs and brings you joy.


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