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0.82kb   How To Demolish Clutter...
Before Clutter Demolishes You
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Let's start with a definition of clutter.

Clutter is:

ANYTHING THAT IS IN ANYPLACE IT DOES NOT BELONG.

Using this definition it is easy to see, that the magazines that belong in a basket or on a shelf, but instead are stacked in the corner where they do not belong are clutter; the clothes that do not fit, that belong at the thrift store or in garage-sale storage boxes, that are piled on the floor where they do not belong, are clutter; the mail that needs to be sorted and dealt with, but is piled on the kitchen counter where it does not belong, is clutter. It has nothing to do with whether an item is useful or unuseful, essential or unessential, pretty or ugly, needful or unneedful, etc. It just means that things need a place and need to be kept in that place.

0.82kb Clearing Away Clutter 0.82kb

Many people try to tell me that you can't clean until you declutter. While this may be true for some areas of your house, it is not true for the whole picture. BEFORE you begin to declutter you have to have your good habits established. The dailies and weeklies always need to be done. When what can be cleaned, is clean, you are just that much more peaceful with your surroundings.

So here is my suggestion in a nutshell - it's what worked for me:

  1. Always do your daily essentials first, followed by kitchen upkeep and bathroom upkeep.

  2. Never add to the clutter. Every day, in fact, twice a day (morning and evening) do a quick clutter check. This is just for today's clutter. The mail, shoes, coats, papers, toys, books, and those things that are brought out just today. I'll say it again, you are NOT allowed to add to any existing clutter.

  3. Do your weeklies each day. Take each day's focus room and do all that you can that falls on a weekly basis. This is things like vacuuming, washing floors, dusting, or whatever else you have decided needs to be done once a week.

  4. Do any monthlies you can do. Things like washing windows, waxing floors, polishing, turning mattresses, fertilizing plants...whatever you can do, do it.

The above items have nothing to do with clutter. Do not even think about clutter when working on the above items.

0.82kb What You Can Think About 0.82kb

You can think about several places where you can pile all related clutter. You will need a place for:

  • books,
  • papers,
  • magazines,
  • toys,
  • garage sale items (if you want to have one),
  • clothes that are too big,
  • clothes that are too small,
  • clothes that are just right,
  • dirty clothes,
  • sewing items,
  • mending,
  • craft items,
  • holiday items,
  • and anything else you can think of. (I am sure it won't take much thinking, just look around at what accumulates.)
You can also think about the areas of your house and what should go where. The number one reason for most clutter is not having a place for things to go. You don't know where to put it, so it gets laid down wherever there is a spot. Soon, every spot is filled, and nothing is where it goes because something else is there.

0.82kb Preparation for Decluttering 0.82kb

Do this before you do anything else. Make piles of the above things in out of the way places. Clear it all out of your family/company living space. As much as possible, keep the piles related. Also, if possible, make the piles in the rooms where things will go. (Remember to keep your living space cleared. You need a clean place - a thinking and relaxing place - and you can't do this in a mess.) If possible, also clear it from your bedroom. Your bedroom should be a sanctuary, not a second-hand-shop.

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