Surprisingly most of us don’t give much thought to the everyday clutter in our lives. At least we don’t until it becomes overwhelming.
Then there are those that live in denial. They’re convinced that everything they keep in their house has a real purpose – no matter how long it has been sitting in the basement gathering dust. Letting go of clutter can be one of the hardest things in life to do, but it’s the right thing.
Clutter may seem harmless, but it can start to affect your life in negative ways. We’re not just talking about stubbing your toe on an item stored in the garage either. All of that junk can take a toll on your emotional well-being.
If you’re reading this article, there’s a good chance you already know that it’s time to do something about all that clutter in your home. The question is where do you start? That’s not an easy question to answer, but it’s not impossible either. Here are 3 Simple rules to live a more organized and disciplined life based on the advice of Justin Klosky.
Rule 1: After a Year It’s Time to Let Go
When a family moves it’s the perfect time to declutter. You should be using it as the ideal time to get rid of a lot of stuff your family never uses, but most of us never do.
We start to pack those drawers into boxes and we know we should be throwing the items in it out instead – we just can’t bring ourselves to do it. If this describes your own experiences, you aren’t alone. It’s human nature to try and hold onto everything in our lives.
Even things as simple as an old concert ticket have memories associated with them. We feel like we’re letting a part of ourselves go if we get rid of them. Somehow, it seems like a betrayal of our family values. In truth, we’re just falling victim to our pack rat nature.
How do you go about accepting that it’s time to get rid of the clutter in your home? The key is to ease into it. Getting rid of everything at once is probably too traumatic for all but the strongest among us. It’s better to take things slowly. Perhaps work on one room a week, or even one drawer at a time if that’s what you’re comfortable with.
That brings us to our first rule. If you’re ready to get started on this but you’re not sure what you should be throwing out it’s time to employ the one year rule. If you have something you haven’t used for more than a year it’s time to let go. If you don’t want to throw it out you might want to have a yard sale or donate it to a charitable organization, but one way or another it needs to go.
Rule 2: Everything in Its Place
The average family home is full of items of all kinds. Most of them you really need. The problem is you can never seem to find them when you do. Why is that? It probably has a lot to do with your organizational skills.
It’s kind of like when you’re looking for that one specific screwdriver, but it doesn’t seem to be anywhere. Then at the last minute, you find it in one of your kitchen drawers. You later remember putting it there because it seemed convenient at the time. That may well be true, but convenience isn’t a good guide for making your house more organized.
There’s only one place that the screwdriver really belonged and that was in the toolbox on its shelf in your garage. If it had been there, you would have found it right away. It might have been more convenient putting it in a drawer in the kitchen, but placing it there was the reason you couldn’t find it when you needed it and ended up so frustrated.
That leads into our next rule. There’s a place for everything. If you can establish where things are meant to be stored in your home and how they’re supposed to be stored you can reduce a lot of the emotional stress in your life. Every time you have to send out a search party for a screwdriver, it takes an emotional toll on you and your family. How many times have you accused someone else of not putting things back when it was you all along?
Rule 3: Is A Junk Drawer Necessary?
Junk. Our homes are full of it. Sometimes it feels like we’re trying to establish our own personal thrift store. We accumulate all kinds of items that just might come in handy someday. I’m not quite sure what someday really means, but I know it’s an important day that’s just around the corner. I can never quite seem to get around that corner though.
Do we really need all of that junk? You know the items I’m talking about. Have you ever found something sitting on the table and put it away in a drawer because you know it might be important? We all have. These are often items that we actually know have no practical purpose at all – we’re just not quite ready to throw them out yet. They end up in the junk drawer.
That brings us to our final rule to help us live a more organized and disciplined life. It’s time to get rid of the junk drawer. We call it that for a reason – the stuff in it is junk and we’ll likely never use it for anything. It’s time to put the junk drawer behind us once and for all.
We Can Be More Organized
Living a more organized life is possible. Making the transition might not be easy, but once we learn to let go of our junk it can be an enlightening experience. Clutter leads to emotional distress and sometimes it can lead to physical distress as well when the junk becomes a safety hazard. These three simple rules can help you change your life and leave the clutter behind for good.
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