Perhaps some of you have started your “Declutter 365 items in 365 days” challenge.  Or maybe you are thinking of starting.  In either case, have you thought about the rules or guidelines you will use in counting your items?

With this challenge, you can make up your own rules as to what counts as an “item”.  I’ll tell you about our rules.  You can use them, or not.  Feel free to make this up as you go along.

I wanted to count things that were somewhat substantial. Yes, we did get rid of some large items, like the dresser shown here.  Several of the items we got rid of were on the small side.  Even small things add up (especially 365 of them!), but I made the following rules for our challenge:

– We didn’t count stuff we would have thrown out anyway.  Like a paper plate.  😉  That’s garbage.  If you have an issue throwing away garbage, you need help that you aren’t going to find here.

– We didn’t count pieces of paper.  Catalogs or binders, yes, but not single pieces of paper.  If you have a bad paper problem, you may want to try a “Toss 365 pieces of paper” challenge.

– I also didn’t count tiny things as 1 item, like Handy Boy’s tiny McDonald’s toys.  I put them into a bag and counted the bag as 1 item.  We found a big pile of packing peanuts in the basement.  I put them into a bag and counted them as one item.  Again, your mileage may vary.

– I counted a pair of items that go together, like shoes, as ONE item. (Ha, you thought I’d miss that one!)

Those were pretty much the only rules we made.  Another thing that I wanted to do was to dispose of all these items in a responsible way.  Items that could be recycled were put into our recycling bin for curbside pickup.  Some items were passed on to other adults or children who could use them.  Some items were sold to people that Handy Man knew; others were sold on Craigslist.  Several things were donated to Goodwill.  Yes, there were a few items that were put into the garbage, but we tried to recycle and donate when possible.  Some things are just beyond repair!

If you are taking this challenge, what are your rules?