On this eve of a new year, I was thinking about the work I do — clutter clearing to help people
get unstuck and moving in the direction of their desires, dreams and goals. Some people think of clutter clearing as a dreaded activity that happens when you can’t stand the clutter anymore, when you’ve got to find something, or when family are planning to visit. That’s the problem.
To keep your life moving and vital, it’s essential that you clear clutter daily, that it be part of your daily routine. Clutter blocks clear thinking, lowers productivity, and lowers self-esteem. When you clear clutter intentionally on a daily basis, you will be able to find what you need when you need it, get more done, think clearly, make good decisions, and feel grounded and in control of your life. Also, there will be little need for a major clutter excavation except perhaps occasionally in storage areas like closets, the attic, basement or garage.
Daily clutter clearing is about maintaining order in your life by regularly cleaning up, putting things away, throwing things away, recycling things, and giving things away. Following are the most important clutter clearing activities to make yourself do every day:
- Put your clothes away. Hang up your coat and other outerwear. Place dirty clothes in the a dirty clothes hamper, and hang up clothes that can be worn again. Put your shoes in your closet. Put jewelry in your jewelry box.
- Put away things that you use: tools, utensils, toiletries, supplies, kitchen utensils, etc.
- Process your mail. Sort it, and recycle the junk mail immediately. Take important papers (bills, papers that require action, papers to be filed) to the location where you will deal with them later.
- Empty shopping bags immediately and put purchased items away.
- Restore order immediately after you’ve finished a project, a meal, or a creative endeavor. For example, after a meal, put away everything associated with the meal — dishes to the dishwasher, leftovers to the refrigerator, spices to the spice rack, etc. If you’ve rearranged furniture, put everything back in place before you stop.
- Throw away trash.
- Put plastic, metal and glass containers in recycling.
- Throw away anything that is broken and cannot be repaired. For example, no one repairs printers these days because it would be cheaper than a new one. Just put your dead printer in the trash.
- Give away things that are useful but that you no longer love or use at least once a year.
Many of the above activities are boring and repetitious and often are procrastinated. In 2018 choose a more helpful perspective about those activities to motivate you to take action every day. One way to think about daily clutter clearing tasks is to remind yourself that each small task is an investment in maintaining a peaceful life, a life where it’s possible to function at your highest level. Most of those tasks take just minutes to do, whereas digging out accumulated clutter can take hours, days or even weeks.
Make a commitment to yourself and others that you will clear clutter daily, and I guarantee that you will have a new story to tell at this time next year!
Happy New Year!