lenten decluttering

Lenten Decluttering (The Best Time to Get Rid of the Unnecessary Things from Home)

Sharing is caring!

Hello Mamas, are you thinking about doing a lenten decluttering?

If so, let’s talk, plan, and do it together! It’s the best time for us to get rid of all the unnecessary things in our homes!

I love decluttering and organizing since I started it in 2017, a few months before I gave birth to my firstborn. Then, I have been doing it every year, though not thoroughly. However, last year, I wasn’t able to do it. I was planning to do it in the summer, then before Christmas, then after New Year, but unfortunately, life was busy and I didn’t find time to do it.

So, I’m planning and determined to do it during this season of Lent, right after I read several blog posts that there are already a lot of moms actually doing it during lent, and there’s even a challenge about it every year.

Lenten Decluttering: The Best Time to Get Rid of the Unnecessary Things from Your Home

All Christians are encouraged to pray, fast, and do almsgiving during Lent. A lot of people fast or give up sweets, alcohol, social media, and other things they love during Lent.

And the concept of Lenten decluttering falls in the “fast” part where people give up clutter for the entire 40 days (except Sundays) instead of or together with sweets, alcohol, and the like during the Lenten season.

Lenten decluttering can be done in a lot of ways, depending on your current situation and preference. Here are the 3 most famous ones:

1. 40 Bags in 40 Days

According to my readings, 40 Bags in 40 Days (with its famous hashtag #40Bagsin40Days), is the original Lenten decluttering challenge that was started in 2011 by Ann Marie Heasley of White House Black Shutters.

The concept of 40 Bags in 40 Days is decluttering a bag of unwanted stuff everyday during the 40-day Lenten season (excluding Sundays). This is a good method to use for those who will be decluttering their homes for the very first time (in my opinion).

Bag sizes don’t have to be in uniform size, so don’t be scared that you need to fill a huge bag everyday for 40 days to complete the challenge.

Check out the post explaining how to do the 40 Bags in 40 Days challenge to see if it’s the Lenten decluttering method for you. You can download printable trackers and guides, completely free, without even subscribing or entering your e-mail.

You can also join the 40 Bags in 40 Days official Facebook group, I just got accepted and I like it because the posts are all decluttering-related and inspiring.

2. One Item Out Everyday for 40 days

Another method that you can use for your Lenten decluttering is “one item out everyday for 40 days”. This method is lighter compared to #1. You will end up with 40 items to throw away, give, or donate at the end of 40 days, instead of 40 bags.

This method is good for those who have already decluttered for years. Or for those who are decluttering for the first time but have difficulty giving up things, this can be a good start since it won’t be overwhelming.

3. Clean Out One Area at a Time

Room-by-room decluttering is the other name for this method, and this is my method of choice everytime I declutter.

It is like the right balance between #1 and #2 because you are not obliged to really come up with one bag of clutter everyday for 40 days, or find that one clutter a day is not enough to see notable progress.

If you don’t know where to start, let me share my process. I always start my decluttering in the most visible part of our home and that is the living room. This way, when I finish decluttering, the result is always noticeable and it encourages me to continue with the process.

Messy room

Then I continue with the kitchen/dining room since it’s next to the living room. Then the master’s bedroom and bathroom, though not very visible, they’re located on the same floor as the living room and kitchen, so it’s practical to continue decluttering the areas on the same level.

Then I proceed downstairs starting with the most visible part which is the play area, then followed by the kids’ room, guest room/ home office, the 2nd bathroom, and the laundry closet.

And if you need your kids to be playing independently or working on their own while you declutter, make sure to check out the free Lenten resources for kids that I compiled:

Free Lenten Printables for Kids

Free Lenten Printable Coloring Pages for Toddlers

Items You Can Easily Get Rid Of from Your Home this Lent without Feeling Guilty

Have you already decided which method to use for your Lenten decluttering? No matter what method you use, here are some ideas of the items you can get rid of easily without guilt.

Why do I know the feeling of guilt? Because I have been there! It’s exactly how I feel when I first declutter in 2017.

I had to go through the process twice because the first time, I only decluttered very few things because I had the feeling of guilt in throwing the items out and wanting to hold on to the items even if I am no longer using them.

Items to Declutter from the Living Room

  • very worn-out throw pillows
  • extra throw pillows hidden in the closet
  • very worn-out throw blanket
  • unused remote controls
  • unused CDs, cassette tapes, VHS (if you still have those)
  • stereo system that is no longer functioning or beyond repair
  • unused or broken wires and chargers

Items to Declutter from the Kitchen/ Dining Room

  • kitchen appliances that are already broken/not functioning well
  • duplicates
  • chipped plates and serving dishes
  • chipped glasses and cups
  • items you didn’t use for the past one or two years
  • very old and no longer presentable kitchen towels
  • storage containers without matching covers
  • chipped storage containers or leaky ones
  • water bottles that your family is no longer using
  • collection of empty jars for storage (just leave enough)

Items to Declutter from the Master’s Bedroom

clothes that don't fit anymore - one of the items you can declutter from the master's bedroom.
  • socks without match
  • very worn-out underwear
  • clothes you didn’t wear for the last one or two years, or more
  • clothes that don’t fit anymore
  • clothes with obvious damage that are beyond repair
  • unused belts
  • shoes, boots, sandals, slippers you haven’t used for the last one or two years, or more
  • bags you haven’t used for the last one or two years, or more
  • very old and no longer presentable bedding sheets (pillowcases, duvet cover, etc.)
  • very old and already badly shaped pillows
  • extra pillows for decoration
  • unused shoe and bag boxes

Items to Declutter from the Bathrooms

  • expired toiletries (shampoo, conditioner, soap, toothpaste)
  • face creams and ointments you haven’t used for the last one or two years, or more
  • very old and nasty-looking toothbrushes
  • expired make-up, lipsticks, lip balms
  • expired sunscreen
  • very old and no longer presentable bath towels
  • extra combs or hair brushes
  • body scrubs that you haven’t used for years
  • unused hair accessories
  • unused fake pieces of jewelry
  • unused neckties

Items to Declutter from the Play Room/ Play Area

  • broken toys beyond repair
  • toys the kids haven’t played with and touched for the past one, two years, or more
  • toys with missing pieces
  • books with missing pages

Items to Declutter from the Kids’ Bedrooms

  • very worn-out clothes
  • socks without match
  • very worn-out underwear
  • clothes that don’t fit anymore
  • clothes with obvious damage that are beyond repair
  • shoes, boots, sandals, and slippers that don’t fit anymore
  • shoes, boots, sandals, and slippers without pairs
  • very old and no longer presentable bedding sheets (pillowcases, duvet cover, etc.)
  • unused shoe boxes

Items to Declutter from the Guest Room/ Home Office

  • very old and no longer presentable bedding sheets (pillowcases, duvet cover, etc
  • very old, unimportant receipts
  • random, unimportant papers
  • empty boxes and contaniers without purpose
  • ballpens without ink
  • unused or broken wires and chargers

Things to Declutter from the Laundry Closet/Room

  • empty soap bottles/ soap boxes
  • expired laundry stuff like stain removal liquid
  • items that are not laundry related that are stored in the closet that you haven’t used for the past one, two years or more

Paper Items to Declutter

paper clutter
  • very old, unnecessary receipts
  • old books that you haven’t read and touched for years
  • old, unnecessary notebooks
  • kids’ drawings (keep some of the most memorable and interesting, but not all)
  • manuals of different appliances
  • random flyers from stores, organizations, etc
  • unnecessary business cards
  • newspapers you no longer need
  • old magazines
  • old calendars
  • old planners

These are just ideas of items you can easily get rid of during your Lenten decluttering, but I’m sure you’ll find more items that are not on the list as you go through the process.

Other Things to Get Rid Off during the Lenten Decluttering

Though Lenten decluttering is mostly for getting rid of the material clutter we have at home, we can also apply the same concept to other things like getting rid of, e-mail junks, bad habits, and bad words, for example. Other people also get rid of their social media for the entire duration of Lent.

giving up social media as part of lenten decluttering.

How about you, what do you usually give up during Lent?

What to Do with the Decluttered Items?

Decluttered items can be donated, given, or thrown away depending on the items’ condition. Ask your family and friends who you think might be interested in the decluttered items that are still in very good condition.

Find local organizations or charities where you can bring your decluttered items that are still in good condition for donation.

Donate - one of the things you can do with the decluttered items from your lenten decluttering challenge.

You can bring the items that are already very worn out and no longer useable to your garbage collection center. Or you can segregate and put them in the corresponding recycling bins in your village.

Final Thoughts On Lenten Decluttering

Have you heard about Lenten decluttering before? If so, have you done it in previous years? If not, are you interested in doing it this year?

If you want to do it this year, share your progress on Facebook by using the hashtags #40Bagin40Days, #LentenDecluttering, #LentenDecluttering2023 to connect with those who are also doing the challenge this year.

Feel free to share your thoughts about Lenten decluttering in the comment section below.

Sharing is caring!

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *