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Need To Organize? Start Small

One of the most common questions I hear from clients is “where do I even start?”. After so many months or years of being surrounded by the same clutter and disorganization, it’s hard to see a starting point when the urge hits to get organized. If you’re one of the many people struggling with clutter but don’t quite know how to tackle it, here are two little words to help you out: start small! It seems almost too simple, but we’ve found success with clients when they keep those two words in the front of their mind.

Emotions Play A Role

The problem we have with our stuff are those emotional and sentimental feelings. This is why when we walk into a client’s home, we are able to see the bigger picture and offer a voice of logic and encouragement. We are seeing the space with fresh eyes and can see a path toward the end goal, which is usually a stress-free, peaceful, and well-organized home. Where most of us falter is getting bogged down in the decision-making process.

When people walk into that cluttered room, they instantly feel negativity. Negativity towards themselves, their stuff, their habits, maybe even their family members. It’s not a pleasant feeling, yet it seems impossible to get rid of. If you were to walk into one of your cluttered rooms with fresh eyes and given the order to sort through everything, having no sentimental attachment to anything in the room, the task would seem so much easier, wouldn’t it?

Grab A Hoola-Hoop

This is where “start small” comes in. With a task that seems too daunting, you know you need to start somewhere. Imagine you have a hula-hoop. If you actually have one, even better! Walk into your cluttered room or space with your real or imaginary hula-hoop, and set it down. Depending on how cluttered the room is, you can put the hoop on a surface with too much stuff, or on the floor. Wherever will give you a “start” on the clutter. Make the goal to work within that hula-hoop sized area for one hour every day/second day. If you don’t have an hour, work for half an hour. If that’s even a stretch, work for 10 minutes. The key here is consistency. 10 minutes may seem like a drop in the bucket, but if you were to consistently work for 10 minutes every day for 2 weeks, say over a lunch break or before bed, you will start to see progress.

Stay Motivated

We tend to think when we start a task that we need to finish it as soon as humanly possible. Especially if it is an unpleasant task, as organizing can be for a lot of people. This is what ultimately deters us from even starting. We see the scope of the task and get overwhelmed, don’t know where to start, and all of a sudden we require a nap and a good movie instead. It happens to all of us!

The point behind “start small” is that even 10 minutes can and will eventually get you to your end goal. We’re all busy, life gets in the way, priorities take over, and really, we just want to do the things we enjoy the most. Most of the time, this is WHY clutter happens: we haven’t taken the time to make “homes” for our stuff, so it piles up, gets neglected, and all of a sudden we look around and our homes are teeming with negative energy.

No Better Time Than Now

Take the time this week to schedule some organizing. Figure out if you can manage an hour, half an hour, or if ten minutes will have to do. Then decide what time of day would be best. Some of us work better in the morning and some of us are night owls. Take this into account when scheduling.

If you’re reading this and thinking “I literally don’t know how and when I can fit even 10 minutes in”, take time this week and make a mental log of any and all “down time” you have. Is it before you head out to work? Is it right before bed? Is it when the kid(s) are taking a nap? Maybe it’s while you’ve got something cooking in the oven for dinner. At the end of the week, find 10 minutes you can logically spare each day/second day and make that time a priority.

Remember Your “Why”

By keeping in mind what you are ultimately trying to achieve, you’ll find the organizing process much less cumbersome. In the grand scheme of things, do you need 14 pairs of gardening gloves to keep a happy and peaceful home? Do you want to have 8 bins of plastic cutlery piled in your basement “just in case”? Or do you want the freedom and peace of mind a functionally organized home brings? If the former hasn’t worked for you thus far, maybe making the shift to “less is more” will.

Blog provided by Functional Spaces


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