You can't really talk about home organization without hearing the word "clutter".
"I need to get organized but what am I going to do with all this clutter?"
"I don't have any more room. I feel like I'm drowning in clutter!"
Many of us try to organize our homes before we've dealt with the clutter.
If you have, You know it doesn't work.
What's that saying, "You can put lipstick on a pig but it's still a pig!"
Well you can try to organize clutter all you want but it is still clutter.
BUT It Wasn't Always Clutter!
When you brought that item into your home it wasn't clutter.
It might have been a volleyball trophy or a beautiful shirt, a holiday coffee cup, a can opener, downhill skis.
You might have once loved it but now you no longer use it. You don't want it, need it, or love it.
And if you think about it perhaps - you never really liked volleyball. Maybe that beautiful shirt never was your style. You have 20-holiday coffee cups and you never have more than 4 people in your place at any one time. That can opener has never worked very well plus you have two others, and you can't remember the last time you went downhill skiing.
It has become clutter because it is no longer relevant to your present circumstances.
The question is. . .
What is this clutter still doing in our houses?
Well to begin with we need to be aware that this clutter is a problem for us.
Awareness is knowledge of a situation or problem and the part we play in having the situation remain the same.
In this case, the situation or problem is the state of our homes and the part we play in its continuing in its present state.
The problem may be a cluttered disorganized home but it's our thinking that allows us to hold onto the clutter that makes it so.
What you believe is everything! Including what you believe about your things.
Have you ever heard these explanations before?
"I can't get rid of this. I paid a lot of money for this thing."
"It is wasteful to get rid of perfectly good things."
"It is wrong to get rid of things that were a gift."
"I'm too tired or I don't have time to deal with these things."
The fact remains that you really don't want, need or use these things. So why do we resist letting go of something that has become clutter?
Did you know? The #1 reason we resist letting go of things is FEAR.
We are afraid.
- We're afraid of the future.
- We're afraid of loss.
- We're afraid of being wasteful.
- We're afraid of being judged.
The problem behind clutter isn't the possessions themselves.
It's the value we put on our possessions monetary or otherwise.
It's how we think about our possessions; and what we do or don't do about them that causes problems.
What we call reasons for keeping things that we don't want, use or need are really excuses.
And they are powerful!
These stories we tell ourselves about our stuff we tend to believe. These stories, beliefs, thoughts can keep us stuck.
So what can we do with these thoughts that are keeping us stuck?
Speak back to your excuses.
CHALLENGING YOUR EXCUSES
Excuse: "I might need it someday." (Fear of the future)
Challenge: "If I can't use it today in the life I'm leading - I don't need it." (Just in case thinking keeps us from living in the present.)
2. Excuse: "I might forget a precious memory." (Fear of loss.)
Challenge: "If the memory is so important, then I must assign it a place that gives it the honour and value it deserves or let it go."
3. Excuse: "I can't get rid of this it cost a lot of money." "It's perfectly good." (Fear of being wasteful.)
Challenge: "I'm paying dearly now for the space and energy it's taking up in my house. It has to go!"
4. Excuse: "I can't donate this. It was a gift. What would they think?" (Fear of being judged.)
Challenge: "Just because it's a gift doesn't mean I have to keep it forever. I've enjoyed it for a time. Now I'll let someone else have the pleasure."
Sound familiar? Ever found yourself using any of these excuses?
Next time. Stop and think. Ask yourself whether you acting out of fear?
How would you act if you had no fear?
Challenge your excuses. *Remember: awareness is knowledge of a situation or problem and the part we play in having the situation remain the same.
If we want the situation to change we must do something differently.
You can't organize clutter!
If you want to declutter and organize your home effectively focus on the emotions that are holding you back from letting go of clutter. Learn to challenge those fears, beliefs, and excuses that are keeping you stuck.
Change starts with becoming aware of the stories we tell ourselves about our clutter and then challenging our excuses. Your successful home organization journey starts when you let go of the limiting beliefs that are holding you back. You can do it!