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Take Your House Back with Cass Aarssen and Dana White
Episode 34916th November 2022 • Plan Simple with Mia Moran • Mia Moran
00:00:00 00:49:06

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“I knew that my house was the thing that I couldn't seem to figure out and conquer. I did not realize that it was because I had too much stuff.”

–Cass Aarssen

You don’t need more bins and baskets to declutter your home. Decluttering comes up a LOT in people’s goals in FLOW365, and when we talked about plans for the week, three women, who I now refer to as “the Decluttering Ladies” kept coming up. So I knew I should get them on for some tips and tricks! If you are sick of having a mess, check out this conversation with Cass Aarssen and Dana White.

Maybe the most important takeaway: decluttering is getting stuff out of your home. Organizing is shuffling stuff from space to space. If you start with organizing or try to do both at the same time, it doesn’t work. You need to get rid of stuff first and get down to your clutter threshold.

And then we need to get real about clutter. Decluttering isn’t a do it and done thing, and it’s not a quick process. That doesn’t mean it has to be overwhelming. You can grab a trash bag and a donation bin and fill them for 5 minutes. We look at specific ways to tackle your mess.

We talk about:

  • Real life gets messy again, but getting things back under control is a quicker process than the original
  • The difference between staging (all those pretty Pinterest organizing ideas you’ve pinned) and real life (even for a professional declutterer and organizer)
  • Finding an organization system that works for you and organizing using the question, “Where would I look for this first?”
  • Choosing the right starting spot (and why a closet may not be it) — the Decluttering Ladies suggest entryway or bedroom
  • Removing trash from an area, then easy stuff that has a home elsewhere as a way to clear space and energy for stuff that may involve harder decisions
  • How to deal with other people’s stuff — focus on your stuff


Cassandra Aarssen is the creator of Clutterbug, a home organizing business which provides education, inspiration, and support to over 500,000 families worldwide through her YouTube channel, podcast, and various other social media platforms. Cassandra is the host of HGTV’s “Hot Mess House” and is also the author of four best-selling organizing books, “Real Life Organizing,” “Cluttered Mess to Organized Success,” “The Clutter Connection,” and “The Declutter Challenge.” As a recovering “super slob,” Cassandra has discovered through her own journey with clutter that organization is not one-size-fits-all.

Dana White is a decluttering expert, much to her own surprise. A Slob Comes Clean is the completely honest (and never-ending) story of Dana’s personal deslobification process. As she finds ways to keep her home under control, she shares the truth about cleaning and organizing strategies that actually work in real life for real people. People who don’t love cleaning and organizing. Dana is a blogger, speaker, and decluttering expert. She is also the author of “How to Manage Your Home without Losing Your Mind” and “Decluttering at the Speed of Life.” 


Doable Changes from this episode:

  • TRASH PURGE. Grab a trash bag and pick an area to declutter. Just get rid of all the trash—old receipts, expired food, scrap paper … This is a great place to start because you can practice getting rid of stuff without making a lot of decisions.
  • 5-MINUTE DECLUTTER SESSION. Grab a trash bag and donation bin. Set a timer for five minutes, and start filling your bag and bin. Don’t organize. Don’t overthink. Just see what can go out. Anytime you have 5 minutes, do another session.
  • FOCUS ON YOUR STUFF. It can be frustrating dealing with other people’s stuff when you are trying to clear space. Try focusing on your own. You can move other people’s stuff to their space. Focus on getting rid of your things that you no longer want or need. It may take a little while, but others may start to see stuff differently and start getting rid of their own.





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