Staying in a beginners mind with my Swedish Death Cleaning.

By Åsa Nilsson | Apr 05, 2024

Tell me who your friends are and I’ll tell you who you are. 

At the end of our days, what do you think will matter the most? 

The stuff we chose to hold on to for dear life because it made us feel good to look at and remember the moments that we have created with them OR will we remember the family and friends (sometimes one and the same) that we love the most and who have continually shown up for us during the most difficult times in our lives? Even when the shit hit the fan. 

Especially when the shit hit the fan.

This episode is a practical summary of what I found when I got to Houston to ‘do the work’ with my beloved eldest sister who had hired me to come in from Sweden to do Swedish Death Cleaning and decluttering in her home after her beloved husband Jay passed away on Christmas Eve.

The best laid plans, my friend. 

I am learning that I need to remain flexible, open, empathetic to all sorts of emotions. I can have an itinerary or game plan that is written in pencil, let’s put it that way. 

Ahh, learning more and more every time. 

Pay attention, Åsa. Stay fresh in Spirit and open minded and hearted in order to learn new ways of doing old things. 

Hope you can learn something too.

Host: Åsa Nilsson

Host contact Information


  • I can not stand to be rushed.
  • Relax into it, don’t stress into it.
  • April is the month of Aries, time to clean it up. The “Self”, 
  • After a major life change, don’t make any huge decisions for one year. 
  • I discovered more clearly how I prefer to work with death cleaning. I am perfectly fine with a set schedule.
  • Started with administrative work: changing names as primary account holders, what accounts need to be cancelled, memberships cancelled. 
  • Auditing all your bills and bank statements every month.
  • Add names on accounts today where possible.
  • Making a priority list of where to start, what rooms need the most attention. 
  • I have no agenda on what rooms get completed first. In the end they will ALL make a difference (when selling a home). 
  • How do I tackle a large closet? I go through this process. 
  • Office re-organization for my sisters needs now. New chair. Getting rid of extra screens, etc. making it HER space. 
  • Working to ‘adult’ children’s rooms.
  • Guest room is now hotelled, new bedding, neutral, cozy. 
  • Character is always revealed. Who comes to your side when you’re at your lowest? You will be surprised. Hold on tight to them. Decluttering ‘friends’ and ‘family’ is ALSO a part of death cleaning.
  • I give some tips on how to help someone who has just experienced death. Don’t ASK them what you can do, just DO something. 
  • Talking with others. The process of discussing what we want and need moving forward.
  • The client determines the pace and timing in their home. 
  • Surrendering to the stuff. Does it bring you peace or weigh you down?

Mentioned in this episode:

  • Margareta Magnusson, The Gentle Art of Death Cleaning, the book.

Contact Information for Komeil Asli,  Podcast Production Manager.

Freelance Graphic designer, UI/UX Designer and Front-end Developer.

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