1) It’s easy to have a good clear out: Not always. For many people, breaking a life-time habit is really hard - everyone has a choice whether they want to make that break or not. The only way you will succeed is when the pain is so big you convert it into the positive energy you need to make you take ACTION. We have to face those emotions in order to process them – that’s when we learn to let go.
2) I know I should, but: there’s no should about clutter clearing – again, we all have a choice. It’s because you want to. If you aren’t ready to let go, you create further inner conflict, and draws on your emotional energy. When you are ready, that’s when the liberation really kicks in.
3) I need to clean out the whole house now!: Not the approach to take unless you want to completely exhaust yourself physically and emotionally trying. One room, or even a corner or a closet, at a time. A little each day is much less overwhelming and manageable. Do something loving for yourself beforehand– show yourself that you deserve to be cared for, then take a look, it will be so much easier for you to process it. If you decide upon a reward afterwards, make sure you take it, otherwise you program yourself that you don’t get what you are worthy of.
4) I’ll give myself x amount of time before deciding to keep or throw: this is the band aid approach. Think of the cost of storage, or the space these items are continuing to take, and all you are doing is delaying facing the reasons and having the freedom.
5) I’ll make money by selling at a garage sale: Can you really bear for people to haggle with you over your once prized possessions? I’ve seen people buying their things back because they can’t stand to see someone else have it. If the money really will come in handy, get a friend or family member to hold the sale for you. Ideally, use ebay on line for items over $50, or do your bit for charity –generosity is gratitude in action, and makes room for bigger and better things to come into your life.
6) It will come in useful one day: The day you need it, you won’t be able to find it. When you do eventually come across it, having emptied cupboards, boxes & bags to find it, chances are, it won’t be 100% perfect for your requirements anyway. You’ll spend more time adjusting it, so you may as well have gone and bought a new whatever to serve the purpose. Give yourself the benefit of the doubt that you will find a way to survive without it.
7) I don’t have time to tidy up: 10 minutes a day putting away will save 20 minutes of trying to find something when you need it - I promise you. As long as everything has a home, this tried & tested system works.
8) I’ll just start tidying up any old place: well yes, sometimes a spontaneous moment of binning it does work – as long as you aren’t scrounging around for it at 3am when no one’s looking. Visualize how you’d like your space to be, and make a plan of attack - create a trash pile, a charity pile, and a keep pile. Revisit that keep pile and double check you really do want to hold onto that item – ask yourself why– if you don’t love it, use it or need it, out it goes. Desire and motivation will win the day when we can picture our end result – that applies to anything we do in life. Imagine what it would be like to be clutter-free?
9) I have to throw it all out: no you don’t. Much of your clutter is created simply because you haven’t created a home for it. Why is that? Probably because subconsciously it is not worth the effort of finding somewhere. If the item is that important to you, find a home for it. Or for display items, ensure your treasure remains visible, and not hidden behind more clutter. Basic rule: If you have stuff you don’t know where to put, it is probably clutter.
10) I’m responsible for everyone else’s clutter: no you’re not, make them responsible for their own. Believe me, if you pack all your kids toys away saving them for your grandchildren and doing them a favor – forget it. They will either feel too guilty to dispose of the stuff when hand me down time comes (second generation clutterbugs), or if they chose to get rid of it straight away, you will take it personally. Save the drama & space and donate the toys, clothes etc to your local playgroup or charity. Use artwork as wrapping paper for special gifts – recycling is a great way to allow others to enjoy what you already have treasured.
© 2005 Organize-Ya
Jo's passion for helping others has extended to getting organized and clearing clutter. + At http://www.organize-ya.com , Jo reviews the best books available to help you get organized. This means you know exactly what you are getting, and ensuring you obtain the help you need - taking the dilemma out of the decision.
You can contact Jo at email@example.com