Decluttering Cure

3 Important Spaces You Can Declutter in Just 20 Minutes

updated May 3, 2019
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(Image credit: Lauren Kolyn)
(Image credit: Kath Nash)

Decluttering isn’t just about clearing the coffee table or retiring some seasonal clothes. It’s about making sure your spaces—especially your storage spaces—are staying streamlined and working efficiently to help you live your life (and, you know, find the things you need when you need them).

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With today’s September Sweep assignment, we’re targeting three such spaces that don’t always get a ton of attention when it’s time to declutter. But it’s just as important to clear them out from time to time.

(Image credit: Marisa Vitale)

Today’s Assignment:

Do a 20-minute decluttering sweep of your refrigerator, freezer and pantry.

I normally love the laundry basket method for these room sweeps, but because your food storage is probably pretty centrally located (and most things are probably destined for the trash), I think it’s best to change up your strategy.

First, bring your trash can close to the refrigerator and spend your first chunk of time sorting through the fridge and freezer for things you no longer need:


  • expired condiments
  • mystery leftovers
  • anything really old and unlikely to be used
  • anything you have multiples of
  • anything you tried and didn’t like


  • anything freezer burned
  • anything really old and unlikely to be used
  • anything you have multiples of
  • ice trays or frozen tools that aren’t being used (looking at you, KitchenAid ice cream attachment)

Then, if there’s time, head towards your pantry, cabinet, or wherever you keep your dry food goods. Bring the trash can with you, but also grab a box or grocery bag where you can collect food (like canned goods) that can be donated.


  • expired condiments
  • unneeded canned goods
  • old, stale food
  • anything you have multiples of
  • anything you tried and didn’t like

Take out the trash, set aside your donations for a food bank, and enjoy your enviously empty new spaces.

And don’t forget:

Clear three things from your monster zone.

All month long, we invite you to share your progress here in the comments and on Instagram with the #septembersweep hashtag!

Check out all the assignments so far on the September Sweep 2018 Main Page.

(Image credit: Kath Nash)

Download the printable PDF calendar:
September Sweep 2018