Swedish Death Cleaning Breathes Life into Your Home

Lara DeHavenHomeowner Tips, Montgomery County

Swedish Death Cleaning

How much is clutter robbing you of time, energy, and emotions? If you find that you are always fighting clutter or worse that you have surrendered to the clutter in your home, then you need to look into Swedish Death Cleaning. It is a great tool to have in your cleaning arsenal, but it is also a great perspective to have in life. We all know that you “can’t take it with you.” So when we die, we leave behind all of our possessions. But we are actually leaving a huge burden on our family and friends in the process. Therefore, here are some basic tenets of Swedish Death Cleaning.

Read the Book

The best way to fully grasp the concept of Swedish Death Cleaning is to read a short book. Margareta Magnusson wrote, “The Gentle Art of Swedish Death Cleaning: How to Free Yourself and Your Family from a Lifetime of Clutter.” She explores a kind of decluttering called döstädning. Dö means “death” and städning means “cleaning,” which is why we call it Death Cleaning in English. To get a much better understanding of this decluttering process, learn directly from Magnusson herself.

Death Cleaning Basics

Ask yourself, “Will anyone be happier if I save this?” Do you really need to keep love letters from your high school sweetheart? Probably not. But really that is for you to decide. Asking this simple question will help you think of others. It will also narrow down the things that actually matter and that need to be kept. Many of the items in our home can be donated and bless someone else. Ms. Magnusson actually recommends starting in the closet. It usually has many items we can donate and very little sentimentality to confront.

Another key realization she encourages us to consider is that “Nobody wants your stuff.” We might think that our children have always wanted our antique headboard, piano, or couch set. More times than naught, they actually are okay with not getting your used furniture. Usually they already have all the furniture they need. You don’t have to hold onto things because you think it will benefit someone else. If it actually will bless them, then why not give it to them while you are alive and see the joy the item gives them for yourself?

Let It Go!

Now I know you are already hearing Elsa’s voice singing, “Let It Go,” as you read this. Ironically she is another Scandinavian woman, though fictional character, encouraging us to let go of emotional baggage and material items. Many times we don’t understand fully the burden we bear from having too many things. Implementing Swedish Death Cleaning can free us in more ways than one.

Hopefully you are intrigued to learn more about Swedish Death Cleaning and/or start implementing the concept in your home. None of us want to be a burden in death. However, we won’t know how much we can benefit now from decluttering our life. Swedish Death Cleaning breathes life into our home freeing us from unwanted stuff.