Decluttering and organizing isn’t inherently complicated or challenging. It doesn’t take formal training or life experience. Even children can take part. But, that doesn’t mean it will necessarily feel easy. It takes consistency, motivation, and looking that overwhelm in the eye and just starting.
We sometimes see people’s end states and think we could never achieve that. I love the story about Michelangelo, when asked about the difficulties he must have faced sculpting the masterpiece David. He said you just chip away the stone that doesn’t look like David. It was a process, right? He couldn’t just press fast forward and get to the end. Same with organizing. It follows the same step by step approach of doing a little bit at a time.
It’s worth the persistence. Unlike many things, such as raising children, where it may be the 547th time you say something that it clicks, you’ll see and feel the positive results of organizing and decluttering right away. The weight will start to lift, your outlook will improve, and the momentum will build.
Ideas to help you keep at it:
- Adopt the philosophy that tomorrow is a new day. If you don’t get to what you wanted to today, don’t beat yourself up. Put it on the calendar (don’t skip this step), and try again tomorrow.
- Set yourself up to be successful. Organize when your energy is the highest. Get the kids occupied elsewhere. Gather your supplies. Carve out 20 minutes. Set a timer. These little steps will help get you going, but don’t wait for the perfect time, because there won’t be one. Just start.
- Do a little every day for one week. 20 minutes a day for several days in a row will get you further than you think. Don’t underestimate little windows of opportunity that present themselves.
- Keep the end in mind and remember your why. More peace? More free time and less time picking up yours and other people’s stuff? Less overwhelm?
- Keep it simple. No need to overcomplicate this. If you’re decluttering, strive to make decisions quickly…donate/sell, garbage, or keep. Then, give everything a home. Even if you don’t have fancy matching organizing containers, the fact that you’ve pared down and everything has a home is a huge win.
- Take breaks if you feel discouraged. Get some fresh air, grab a snack, reset that timer for somewhere between 15 and 30 minutes, and get back to it.
- Start in a low emotion space. Start with a small space that has items that you have no emotional attachment to, such as a junk drawer. Leave the photo organization for another day.
Just like with most good things in life, organizing takes patience and takes doing something that may be hard for you. But, the results will be worth the persistence. I can’t wait for you to have more time, money, peace, harmony, and to love the space you have!