Considering becoming a travel nurse or therapist, but not sure how you will ever stay organized? All it takes is a little bit of decluttering and arranging to maintain this kind of lifestyle. Make your next travel therapy or nursing move effortless with these decluttering tips.
Benefits of Decluttering
We all know that over time the things you own can begin to pile up, and sometimes you forget they exist. When was the last time you even looked at that bookshelf, let alone read anything from it? This can be especially challenging when you are a travel RN or RRT, moving every 13 weeks. Your primary goal is to pack everything you own into your vehicle and unpack it quickly at your next destination.
With lots of stuff and little organization, your home can cause unwanted stress and anxiety. This is where decluttering comes in. Decluttering during your stay as well as before moving to a new location can be beneficial for a more efficient move and peace of mind. Minimizing how much stuff you own can reduce stress, improve productivity, help you save money, and have better sleep habits. It's something you can start right now that will have a significant impact when you're preparing for new travel healthcare jobs.
How to Declutter: Systems to Help You
Many methods are circulating the internet that can help you put systems in place to help gear up your decluttering lifestyle. You can select the one system that feels right for you, or choose elements from many techniques. Here are a few to get you started:
The KonMari Method
Marie Kondo is the author of the best-selling book The Life-Changing Magic of Tidying Up and the star of the Netflix series Tidying Up with Marie Kondo. Kondo is famous for providing a system of simplifying our homes based on the idea of joy. The aptly-named KonMari method involves physical touch with an item. If it immediately brings you joy, you keep it; if it does not, you must toss it! It must be a resounding "Yes!" for you to keep the item in your life, and serve a purpose in your ideal lifestyle. Marie provides several tips to perform this method successfully, such as:
- - Tidy as much as you can in one day
- - Visualize the destination, and what your ideal lifestyle looks like so you know what you're minimizing for
- - Determine if the item sparks joy or is just something you're holding onto
- - Clean according to each category and tidy in order
Marie starts her decluttering process with clothes, followed by books, papers, and miscellaneous items. The final group is sentimental items. This order ensures you have a strong understanding of what "sparks joy" before tackling the things that are most difficult to part with.
The Four Box Method
The four-box method is a simple tool to quickly organize your items before decluttering. Each box has a specific designation: the keep box, the "I'm not sure" box, the trash box, and the shred box or donate box. You can dedicate the fourth box to whatever applies to your life. If you are going through many saved documents, using this box as a shred box would be beneficial. If you have gently-used or new items that you would like to give away, using the fourth box for donations is ideal. Having a clear distinction of where each item is going will allow you to declutter in an organized way. You won't accidentally keep things you should have thrown out. The four box option also pairs well with the KonMari method. You can combine the two together and revisit what you're unsure about later on.
The Backward Hanger Approach
This is a simple technique to help you declutter your clothing and keep a handle on your closet. Unlike the previous methods, this should happen anytime you're in your closet. The backward hanger method provides a visual of how much you're actually using your clothing. First, organize your hangers in a backward fashion so that the open end of the hook is facing you. Once you wear something, hang it back up the usual way, where the hanger opening faces away from you. Over time you will begin to see that there are items in your closet that you have not touched. You can use a similar approach for clothing you store in a dresser by putting a safety pin on questionable items. Once you wear them, remove the pin. Set a reminder on your calendar for three or six months from now and see what you haven't worn. Take into consideration the time of year, but also be diligent in donating the articles of clothing that you haven't touched.
The Minimalists’ Packing Party
Minimalists Ryan Nicodemus and Joshua Fields Millburn created a game called the "Packing Party" for people who don't have a year to declutter and need fast results. This is perfect for a travel nurse or therapist who is trying to declutter quickly before moving to their next assignment. The overall system here is to pack all your possessions and only take items out as you need them. This will give you a sense of what you use versus what is clutter in your home. After 21 days, take a look in your box and see what items you never touched. This will help you decide if the item is truly needed or if you can give it away or send it to the trash. This is an excellent option if you are already packed in boxes from your last move. Plus, it will only take 21 days to assess your essentials and begin living more clutter-free! If you're not packed in boxes, the minimalists suggest packing one room of your house at a time and assessing over 2 weeks, so the task is less overwhelming.
Keep Your Essentials Safe
As a travel therapist or nurse, it's crucial that you hold onto certain essentials that will be helpful for you at every destination. Essentials you should keep secure are your birth certificate, social security card, diploma(s) and transcripts, and professional licenses. A sturdy, fire-safe lockbox can help store these files together and travel with you wherever you make your next home. Another simple item to hold on to when decluttering for a move is a laundry basket. You may need to use laundromats in locations that do not have a washing machine and dryer in your home. You can also pack belongings in laundry baskets to save money on purchasing boxes and to save room in your car! Cleaning products are other items you should travel with; but, make sure to pack these items appropriately to avoid any messes.
Decluttering can be an intimidating process, and it can seem like there's no end in sight. But with a simple method or two and a little time and effort, you can be well on your way to a decluttered life and a smoother move to your next location!
Need help planning your next career move? We got you covered. See what you should look for in a travel nurse staffing agency by clicking below.