Are you in love with your clutter?
I know that may sound like a silly question but I want you to be honest with yourself. Do you love your clutter? The majority of people I meet would say no and most don’t really understand how things got to a point where they are surrounded by piles in their homes and lives. There are reasons why we clutter and I feel to get organized is to first understand the why then deal with the stuff. Following are four reasons people clutter with the goal that once you understand your reason you will be motivated to conquer those piles and get organized.
Hoarding- You have seen the shows and read the articles. Hoarding is a serious disorder suffered by many. This would require an in-depth discussion with professionals who specialize in hoarding disorders. I want to talk about those on the other end of the spectrum like myself.
Growing up I would see my Mother save things. One of the items she would save were the margarine containers. They always came in handy to store items. Fast forward a few years when I became an adult, I started doing the same thing until I realized I had a cabinet full of containers. I had accumulated too many and it was time for me to deal with them.
My solution was simply to no longer purchase margarine in containers only in stick form so I would have nothing to save. Most recently that has become easier now that I use butter. Changing my choices helped me reduce the clutter in my life. What choices can you make to do the same?
Delaying Decisions-This happens when you decide not to open the mail, read the newspaper or take items out of the bag when you go shopping. The results are piles of mail, newspapers and bags throughout your home just waiting for the next action. The solution is to discipline yourself to take the next action to gain control over those piles.
One client decided that she was never going to be too busy to break that old habit of dropping everything by the front door. She wanted to eliminate that stressful feeling she would get every time she would step inside her home. She now places mail in a mail tray and also disciplined herself to place the items from her shopping trips in the room they belonged, taking them out of the bag and giving herself until the end of the day to put them away. No more piles of clutter when she enters her home.
Perfectionism- This can stop some people in their tracks, the need to have everything perfect. This usually leads to stuff not getting done because they are the only ones that can do it right. Other times there is this thought that there is a perfect system that has to be created to organize items or a space and there is none. Each system is customized to meet the needs of the individual or family.
In my own life I have had several systems to organize my clothes. I have had wall closets, walk-in closets and now I have a closet that is ¼ the size of what I am use to. I am making it work. I downsized my wardrobe and added another bar to maximize that closet space. I know this will not be my last closet but for now it works well for my current needs and allows me to find things the first time I look. How can you make what you have work for you?
Sentimental –This is the kind of clutter that is closely tied to our emotions. This stuff could be cards, letters, toys and jewelry. Recently on my Live Strategy Session with my Facebook Group I discovered several members like myself that had jewelry that belonged to their Mother that was difficult to part with. I shared with them my struggles as well as some possible solutions.
I told the group that I kept several pieces to wear, will give several pieces to a friend and those hard to part with pieces like the clip on earrings I can’t wear I will decorate a frame and keep it in my bedroom. Other members of the group liked the idea so much that we will be getting together soon to decorate frames with our Mother’s jewelry. That is one solution to downsize those sentimental items and repurpose them into something functional or decorative.
Now that I have shared why we hold onto stuff discover your reason for holding on to the stuff that has taken over your home and life. Start today by deciding to let go of something that you no longer love and pass it onto to someone who will.
Has this blog motivated you to start getting rid of those items that you would never part with? Please share I would love to hear from you. If you need support with your organizing project so that you can stay on track check out my Get My Life Totally Organized Group that was created as safe place where you can post questions, photos and videos of your organizing challenges and receive strategies that will help you get your life in order.