I personally enjoy resetting my home back to “normal” after Christmas, as much as I enjoy putting the decorations up before, as it symbolises the beginning of a new year for which I want to make space for.  But I know many people find it difficult for various reasons to deal with the post-Christmas clutter.  So here are a few tips to help you deal with the decorations, the gifts, the wrapping paper and the greeting cards that might be getting in your way.


If the post-Christmas clutter involves decorations

Conquer Post Christmas Clutter | Get Organised and Beyond Singapore

If you struggle to find the motivation to put away the Christmas decorations, set a deadline in your diary by hosting a dinner or party at home.  Make it a point to remove any traces of Christmas by then.

Purge decorations as you take them down.  Throw right away the ones that are damaged and can’t be fixed (or that you know you won’t get to fixing).  Put aside the ones you no longer like and that you’re not planning to use again.

If you still have too many, set a limit in terms of number boxes of Christmas decorations you can afford to keep based on your storage space.  Select your favourites and let go of the excess.

It will probably be difficult to find someone interested in your castaways at this point.  In that case, store them in a separate box clearly labelled and add a reminder in your diary 4 to 6 weeks before next Christmas to give them away.

If you have several boxes of Christmas decorations, sort them in categories such as Christmas tree ornaments, table ornaments and home decorations so that you can be more efficient when decorating your home next year.  Use garlands to wrap fragile ornaments.  Label the boxes with their respective contents.

Keep the Christmas boxes out for a week in case you come across pieces you had forgotten about.  Otherwise, they are unlikely to make their way back into their proper box and will be left as loose pieces on top of the box or in a random place at the risk of being damaged or forgotten.


What you could be doing before next Christmas…

Give away the decorations you’re not using or not intending to use again right after you’ve decorated your home so they can be put to good use immediately.  Isn’t Christmas also about bringing joy into someone else’s life even if you don’t necessarily know that person?


If the post-Christmas clutter involves gifts

Conquer Post Christmas Clutter | Get Organised and Beyond Singapore

First, be honest with yourself.  Did the gifts you’ve received make you happy?  Are you planning to display them or use them?  If not, shoving them in a cupboard is not going to make you appreciate them more or truly honour the person who gave it to you.

You’ve accepted the gift with grace and thanked the person who gifted it to you?  Let go of the gift and let go of the guilt.  After all, the gift is in the giving, not in the gift itself.  Those gifts can be re-gifted or given away to someone who will know how to enjoy them more than you’d do.  Another occasion to spread joy.

Then find a home for the gifts you’re keeping so they don’t end up on any flat surface available or are shoved into any random cupboard.  That’s the best way to make use of them or to enjoy them.

If you have young children who have been given more toys than your toys storage space can accommodate, you’ll need to make space for the new toys by purging the existing ones.  Involving your children in the process can be a good lesson for them to learn to share with children who are not as lucky as they are.  You can use the one-in-one-out rule.  You can also think of a rotation system so that your child is not overwhelmed by receiving too many toys at once.  In fact, studies have shown that children who have too many toys to play with are more easily distracted and show less interest in their toys, while children who have fewer toys play longer and use their imaginations more.  For more tips on toys organisation, read this blog.


What you could be doing before next Christmas…

Build a wish list over the next few months and share it with your family before next Christmas to avoid “disappointing” gifts.  Ask for experience instead of physical gifts.  Encourage several family members to contribute towards one gift instead of buying one each.

In November, go through a decluttering exercise in your home, especially in the children’s areas, to make space to accommodate the inflow of gifts so you can focus on enjoying your presents instead of struggling to find them a home.


If the post-Christmas clutter involves wrapping paper

Conquer Post Christmas Clutter | Get Organised and Beyond Singapore

If you have a large variety and quantity of wrapping paper, ribbons etc. specific to Christmas, you may want to store them away with Christmas decorations so that they don’t take primary space for the rest of the year.  Investing in a long and narrow container might be a good idea so they don’t get damaged if they are kept in a storeroom.


What you could be doing before next Christmas…

Standardise your wrapping paper by using a few that can be used for various recipients or multiple occasions and use ribbons or other embellishments to customise your wrapping.


If the post-Christmas clutter involves greeting cards

Conquer Post Christmas Clutter | Get Organised and Beyond Singapore

Displaying greeting cards adds to my Christmas décor and mood.  They’re the last ones I keep up, but when comes the end of January, I select my favourites and put them in a memorabilia box, and let go of the others.

If you struggle to let go of the cards, you can also digitise them and save them on your computer in a dedicated folder or on an app like Artkive using tags so you can easily find them when you want to go down memory lane.


As we usually spend the Christmas season in France with our families, I make it a point to find a home for the presents we were given as soon as I have emptied our suitcases and to put the Christmas decorations away the following day.  I’ve been practising this for so many years that it has become a ritual for me.


What about you?  Which strategies do you use to conquer the post-Christmas clutter?


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