Join my email list and get FREE ACCESS to the MSM Freebie Library, including my top printables & eBooks.

12 Months to a Healthier You: September’s Challenge


Note: I kind of fell off the bandwagon with this series in August. My goal-setting post for this week (coming in a bit) will explain why. Thanks for your patience with me. I’m excited to get back to this series again!

One of my goals for 2014 is to focus on my health. It’s easy to let our health take a back burner to everything else on our to-do list. But as I share in my new book, Say Goodbye to Survival Mode, I’ve experienced what happens when you put your health last… and it’s not pretty!

With this in mind, I’m committed to making my health even more of a priority this year. And I’d love to have you join me for the 12 Months to a Healthier You Challenge.

We’re be focusing on one challenge area each month — all with the goal of being in a healthier place as a person by the end of next year. My hope is that as we work on instilling one new healthy habit each month, they won’t just be month-long challenges, but lifelong changes.

12 Months to a Healthier You Focus Areas for 2014

Here are the focus areas I’ve planned out for 2014:

January: Exercise Regularly
February: Eat More Fresh Fruits & Veggies
March: Drink More Water
April: Cut Back on Sugar
May: Get More Rest
June: Create a Morning Routine
July: Read More
August: Go to Bed Earlier
September: Declutter Your Home
October: Cut Back on Caffeine
November: Keep a Gratitude Journal
December: Simplify & Say No

How This Challenge Works:

At the beginning of the month, I’ll introduce the focus area and encourage you to set a small goal for that specific area and I’ll share my goals.

Then, every Friday, I’ll have a check-in post where I’ll encourage you to share your progress & struggles and I’ll share mine, as well. If you want to blog about your progress, I’ll include a link-up at the end of the post so you can share your blog posts on this challenge.

In addition to the Friday check-ins, I’ll also probably share a few posts and guest posts on the monthly topics each month, along with sharing about related books, resources, or websites that I’ve found helpful.

Are you on social media? You can also share your progress on Instagram, Facebook, Pinterest, or Twitter by using hashtag #12MonthstoaHealthierYou.

My Goals for Decluttering My House in September

My goal for September is to spend at least 30 minutes to an hour every week this month focusing on decluttering. I plan to share a post with my pictures and results of my decluttering each Monday this month.

Will you be joining me for this September Challenge? If so, leave a comment letting us know you’re planning to join and what your decluttering goals are — whether it’s an area of the house you plan to tackle or a certain amount of time you plan to spend. Remember to keep them simple and doable!

Subscribe for free email updates from Money Saving Mom® and get my Guide to Freezer Cooking for free!


  • Victoria says:

    I really need to attack our master bedroom. So I love this months goal. I am thinking one podcast worth of cleaning a day (Saturday and Sunday off). I have a short podcast in mind that is usually around 15 to 20 minutes tops. Listening to podcasts as I declutter really helps the time fly.

  • Jessica says:

    Yes, I’m in on this challenge! A group I’m in is doing two challenges related to this. One is the Minimalist Game where on day 1 you get rid of 1 thing, day 2 is two items, day 3 is 3 items, all the way through September 30th, by which time you will have gotten rid of 400 or so items. The other challenge is 40 bags in 40 days, which is what I am doing because I have way more than 400 items that need to go! I started my challenge a bit early and have completed day 4. So far I have gotten rid of one bag of outgrown kids’ clothes, one bag of personal care items, one bag of snack foods / foods that were expired, stale or no one liked, and one bag of clothing and facial care items from my dresser.

    • brittney says:

      This is a great idea. We’re in the middle of packing for a move so the timing is perfect. I think I will try the daily challenge too.

  • Beth says:

    I’m in too! We are planning to move in the next few months. Since the details aren’t finalized, it’s been hard to be too focused, but I think it is time to get to work!

  • Kerri says:

    I am all in on this one! I have been on a decluttering mission for the last week and won’t say the number of garbage bags of items that have already gone out the door. 🙂 The redeeming fact is that most of the bags went to people who needed what I had and I was happy to give it to them.

  • Ashley turner says:

    I am going to join you for this challenge ! Ian going to focus on the downstairs of my house , I hope to spend one hour each week! Thank you 🙂

  • Linda says:

    Yes I will be joining in the September challenge , it will help me to get started on my Fall Cleaning.

  • I am totally in! I’m trying to declutter at least 10 minutes each day. I’d really like to make some progress on our garage and playroom.

  • Shelly says:

    I’ll be joining in. I’m going to be concentrating on one area a week to decluttered spending about a half an hour a week.

  • Nandini Goswami says:

    Hi , I am Nandini from Calcutta in India, would love to join the challenge as am hooked on to reading on decluttering challenges on the net over the last two months. And Crystal, inspite of being far removed from your country across oceans, speaking a different language, with completely different cultures, I seem to connect so well with your write-ups on this site. And for me, what you write is inspiring and addictive. I am not much into social networking but strangely I felt like joining in the decluttering exercise….wish i can do this as we are in the process of shifting to a smaller house next month.

  • Quinn says:

    Going to clean a section of a my closet once a week until its finished. Learning its good to split it up and feel accomplished than set out to do the WHOLE closet and be disappointed.

  • Decluttering is a continuous process for me. (Things come in faster than I can get them out.) I like the idea of 30 minutes to an hour a week. It’s a reasonable goal for me with homeschooling 4 children and trying to get a number of home repair projects done before winter.

  • Amy says:

    I’m in! I need to declutter my computer room to turn it into a kid bedroom! It’s a huge project!

  • Crystal, your posts are always right on time! I have been doing this very same project for the past month! I am currently going through my home this week and making piles for donating to a local thrift shop (which funds its namesake children’s charity) and Freecycle. Also, since the end of July, I have actually all but finished clearing out my living room and dining room. I have sold nearly $2,000.00 in unneeded items in my home, with half of my items still to go; I am using my dining room as a staging area for the sales. The plan for the funds? First, my husband and I am TTC, and part of the money will buy second-hand baby equipment, furniture, new carpeting for a nursery, and a cushion for pre-natal visits, and the other half will buy several more vintage finds that I will be chalk painting to replace the furniture I have sold. As I have already put some money back from blogging, I will be able to re-decorate two rooms in my home and fully furnish a nursery for free as a result. Grant it, nearly a third of my home looks sparce (as I will be painting/chalk painting this fall if ever the humidity in the deep south breaks), there is a sense of calm that comes from a de-cluttered home. I have several neighbors who have openly laughed at me for parting with two rooms worth of goods and buying baby essentials, much to my dismay. An example, I recently found an excersaucer and jogging stroller on Craigslist, and was able to buy both for only both $20.00, when my neighbor saw me bringing them home, he walks to the end of his driveway and tells me I’m a jinx! To this I say, I’m preparing for the blessings which shall come to my family; my plan will have two room re-decorated, a nursery prepared for, though not assembled until the time it is needed, and my family in a situation where the money we would have spent on new baby essentials, will instead become a cash payment towards post-birthing bills. I’m not superstitious about my family, future, or finances, I’m just a faithful planner for them.

  • Meredith says:

    My kids and I are back to school this week, so between that and taking care of my 9 month old, I like the idea of setting a goal of 30 minutes a week to declutter. Seems doable! Thanks!!

  • Bethany says:

    Crystal I’ve loved these challenges but have kind of watched with envy, not sure I could pull it off. But this month I’m determined. Decluttering is something I need so bad and my home’s lack of cleanliness really overwhelms me all the time. i’m not a neat person but if I had less stuff I think it’d be easier to keep it clean. I’m praying about starting to host my small group in my home starting in October, and one of my main concerns is will I be able to keep things clean enough for guests to come in each week? I’m praying so. So to put me toward that, I’m committing to getting rid of (or repurpose usefully) 5 things each week this month. I know that’s pretty small compared to what some of you ladies are doing, but I’m a single girl with a newly furnished house, so I’m not sure how much there is to get rid. Here’s hoping I’ll be able to get rid of even more! I’d like to sell some of it, but if it doesn’t sell by Sept. 31, it’s headed to Goodwill. I’m excited! Thanks for this challenge.

    • You can do it! I’m cheering for you!

    • Sherri says:

      I found that hosting a home group was a powerful motivator for having my house clean, at least for one day a week. Okay, really only the living room, bathroom, and kitchen needed to be clean, which was helpful. I could just shut the doors to the bedrooms to hide the rest of the mess. Go for it!

  • Tamara says:

    Love this idea! I need to learn to tackle things a little at a time! I like the 30 minute idea! 🙂

  • Karen says:

    I have begun but it is hard – 50 years of teaching material is hard to part with but necessary especially since I hit my 3 score, 10 + 2 yesterday. Need to start paring down on books and ditto copies while I still have the capacity to do it.

  • Rebecca says:

    Tonight is the first time I’ve noticed anything about this challenge. SOOO great! I have actually been decluttering for the past few weeks and have noticed I don’t feel the urge to shop and am overall just enjoying my home more. Amazing! Still more to go with my home office and guest room needing another run through. I hate clutter any way but I’m loving this much more minimalist approach!! I’m excited to keep up with this challenge for the next few months!

Money Saving Mom® Comment Policy

We love comments from readers, so chime in with your thoughts below! We do our best to keep this blog upbeat and encouraging, so please keep your comments cordial and kind. Read more information on our comment policy.

Leave a Comment

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *