Friday, June 20, 2008

Clutter Clearing

Clutter is an unwelcome guest in many homes. It sneaks in quietly, pounces, and takes over. Before you know what's happening, your house is filled with its nonsense from corner to corner, and top to bottom. Undoubtedly, prevention is the best method, but if clutter is already sitting comfortably in your house, then there are some things you can do to push it out the door.

Start small. Clutter is best fought one battle at a time. If you try to tackle the entire house in one go, you are only going to end up shuffling things around and feeling more frustrated than ever. Pick one room to start, and make sure you finish it. For instance, if you decide to begin in a bedroom, don't quit until you have pulled everything out from under the bed and from inside all the dressers. Then, once you have everything together, get rid of it! Or at least, a good portion of it. Bring some bags or boxes with you and sort into three categories: donation, trash and keep.

If you haven't seen it or used it in more than three months, you don't need it. If you have strong sentimental attachments to any of the objects you are sorting, limit the quantity that you are allowed to keep. If you have twenty useless but memory-full knickknacks, you only get to keep two or three. Take a picture of the rest, a great way to preserve the memories without filling your house.

Choose the things you keep with great discretion. Keep only things that you actually use and have a purpose--and have a place for. Keeping things that you "may" need someday is not allowed. Once you have everything sorted, put it all away and make sure there is room for it all. If not, you still need to let go of some of it.

Immediately take the donation boxes or bags out of your home. Put them in the trunk of your car and drive them to a donation center. Same goes for the trash bags. Take them out to them curb, get them out of your home. Clear that clutter from your home and you will see the results appear before your eyes.

In the future, when you are tempted to acquire new clutter, ask yourself if it is something you really need. Does it have a place? A purpose? Those questions will help you keep clutter from invading your home again.

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