November is the Month of Consolidation

November Checklist {2013 in 2013 Declutter Challenge}

November?! Already?

This means we’re 11 months into the 2013 in 2013 Declutter Challenge, and I hope those of you who have been working through it alongside me have been enjoying it. (Or enjoying the benefits at least!)

I realise I haven’t posted updates of my own progress for quite some time, partly due to time constraints and partly due to the fact that I simply don’t have as much stuff to declutter any more. That being said, this month’s checklist has inspired me to action, and I really expect the next few weeks to offer up quite a lot of clutter and excess. So by the time the final month rolls around, I will have well and truly reached my goal of 2013 items decluttered.

How are you going with your challenge?

To jump right in to this month’s challenge, you can download the November checklist here. Or keep reading to find the full list, as well as added tips and suggestions below.

November is the Month of Consolidation

As we come into the busiest time of year, the last thing we need is a great long list of extra things to do. So this month is all about re-visiting the work you’ve done throughout the year.

In fact, this is where you really start to see the benefits of that work. You will see just how much less work it is to keep on top of things now that you have decluttered most spaces in your home. No longer is it a completely daunting task to declutter the kitchen or wardrobe. The hours you’ve put in over the year have made an enormous difference!

That being said, there is almost certainly still work to be done. (Sorry – no time off just yet!) But instead of focusing on just one area of the home, this month’s tasks cover all major zones. We’re aiming to do a quick declutter of all main areas, focusing particularly on the flat surfaces in each room. Decluttering these spaces gives you the best results, and they are most likely to have accumulated clutter over the past few months.

Even if you think you have decluttered everything you could want to, chances are you have gotten better at decluttering over the year. I can almost guarantee you will find many things that were passed over during your first (or even second) round of decluttering that you can easily let go of now.

Similarly, the process of decluttering has probably become very familiar to you now, so the time you need to allow for each area is much less. 10-30 minutes is all you will need to spend in each space, which is easily divided over a month, or tackled in one or two large chunks of time over a weekend or evening. In fact, why not challenge yourself by setting a timer for each space you declutter, and try to beat the clock? It’s amazing the motivation you get when there’s a little competition!

The November Declutter Checklist

This month’s list is designed for speed and maximum effectiveness, rather than a really deep declutter. It’s all about polishing up the work you’ve already done and having your home at its calm and welcoming best for the upcoming holiday season.

As you work through each space, one at a time, keep these tips in mind:

  1. Target flat surfaces for the best results. Work through one flat surface at a time, sorting rubbish, donations and out-of-place items as you go.
  2. Keep an empty laundry basket with you as you move through the spaces, putting out-of-place items in it. This way you only have to sort and return the items to each room once. It saves a lot of time!


  • Bedside tables
  • Bed (linen, cushions, clutter)
  • Seating
  • Drawers
  • Wardrobe (target piles)
  • Under beds (kids particularly)


  • Cabinets
  • Drawers (empty, out of date, unused items)
  • Decor
  • Bath toys

Living & Family

  • TV unit
  • Drawers
  • Coffee table
  • Side tables
  • Lounges/Armchairs (cushions, throws)
  • Bookshelves

Kitchen & Dining

  • Benchtops (particularly clutter zones)
  • Cutlery Drawer
  • Utensils Drawer
  • Dining table (decor, clutter zones)
  • Buffet/Secondary Storage


  • Hall table
  • Seating
  • Coatrack/Hatstand


  • Benchtops (piles, ironing, clothes)
  • Cupboards

You can go ahead and download the printable November Checklist right here, and you can find all previous month’s checklists listed here.

As you make your way through your spaces this month, the following posts also may prove useful:

34 Proven Ways to Keep Your Home Clutter-Free

‘D’ is for Decluttering: A-Z of Simple Living

One Sure-Fire Way to Tidy Your House – FAST

Finally, A Question About 2014…

What are your goals for simplifying in 2014? Decluttering? Striking a better balance in life? Finding rhythms that suit you, your family and you lifestyle?

The reason I ask is that I’m thinking about creating a guidebook that will walk you through a clutter-free year. It will follow the same basic structure as the 2013 in 2013 Challenge, with more in-depth instructions and guidance into how best to declutter your home over the course of a year.

Alternatively, I am considering a digital course covering the same topic. Video and audio would be offered each month, as well as checklists, task lists and a breakdown of what you actually need in your home.

If either of these options appeals, please feel free to leave a comment or drop me a quick email. I’d love nothing more than to help you create a simpler home in 2014, it’s just a matter of what works best for you.


5 Responses to November is the Month of Consolidation

  1. Both the guidebook and the digital course sound brilliant, but what i really need is some way of encouraging my hoarder husband to give up some of his junk (er I mean ‘useful’) collections!
    Great read as ever Brooke, thanks for sharing.

  2. Ooo, both options sound awesome for 2014! I haven’t made enough progress this year, but I think we are moving in the new year, so will need to do a big declutter now and during holiday season. Where has the time gone?!? it feels like not so long ago that this challenge was just starting…

  3. Both options sound great but, I am with Jo along with needing help in encouraging my 4 year old daughter to get rid of some of her stuff as well. Thanks.

  4. I just found your blog as I searched for some ideas on how to do a year long declutter; so I would be open to either of those.