I got rid of so much stuff when I downsized my home. I got rid of even more when I finally organized my garage. And yet, there always seems to be so much clutter. I save magazines, meaning to read that certain article. Suddenly my basket where I keep magazines is overflowing and I have no idea why I've been hanging onto them. Sheesh! And let's not even discuss how books seem to multiply while I sleep.
I read this article (part of a longer piece on New Year's promises) in the newspaper and thought it was worth sharing as well as following:
There are as many reasons not to get organized as there are items piled in that basement corner.
But are the reasons good ones? Christine Landino, of An Orderly Space in West Hartford, says most people prefer organization, even if it might not be organization someone else would recognize.
"I think there's a continuum of people who are organized but don't feel
efficient, and people who are messy or cluttered but neat," she said.
"Most people are like a merry-go-round. They get organized and get
everything all neat and clean, and then they turn around and let things
Landino has a background in social work, so she's interested in learning the behaviors behind the actions.
"You can ask, 'Why am I holding onto things? Why do I have a fear of getting rid of things? Why can't I find things?'" she said.
She suggests thinking about things you use, and things you don't, and to organize accordingly.
"For example, I'm not a good baker, so I've moved all my baking stuff
on high, high shelves," Landino said. "You can re-evaluate your space
that way. What works for one person might not work for another. It's
not a quick fix. It's about behavior modification."
- Take a basket or bin and walk through your house: If you haven't used an item in the past year, consider donating it.
- Focus on your kitchen: Landino says if you open the cupboard and find 12 coffee cups in a household of two coffee-drinkers, you can keep fewer cups.
- Act as if you're moving, and eliminate items you don't want to bring with you.
- Do not organize the house all at once: Take it room by room, lest you get overwhelmed.
- Figure out why you don't get organized, what you have been avoiding and what you need to do to change that behavior.
— Susan Campbell, The Hartford Courant
Good luck on de-cluttering.