Cindy’s Weekly Wisdom
I’ve been decluttering at work recently. We transformed a short hallway that went nowhere into a storage closet, and I started working my magic on it. I told Colleen, and she said, “They must be really grateful.”
I’m not so sure.
I work for two attorneys, whom I am going to call HE and SHE. They are very different. HE doesn’t seem to think much about his surroundings, and SHE could become a decorator. SHE loves moving the furniture and paintings, putting out pretty boxes for functional items like paper clips, and SHE like a somewhat crowded decorating style. SHE also saves things, like furniture and bedding, in a storage unit so that SHE can rotate items when the whim strikes her.
When I ask HIM about getting rid of something, HE generally either tells me to get rid of it, or HE tells me that he’ll think about it later. HE has about a 3 minute tolerance for decluttering tasks.
SHE gives great consideration to all the questions: Can we use it somewhere else? Will we need it some day? Could I use it at home instead, etc. As I said, SHE likes to keep things.
Then there’s ME. I like to organize things and get rid of what’s not needed, and I take a pretty hard line on what those unneeded items are. The woman who ordered supplies before me believed that nothing exceeded like excess. I estimate that I won’t buy another paperclip – ever. We have 13 boxes, and I don’t think a single one of them has been opened in the past 17 months. We use lots of them, but we get lots in the mail too. There’s a sea of ever-circulating paperclips among lawyers. None of us ever need buy them again! We have several dozen markers for dry erase boards. I worry that by the time we get around to using the last box, dry is what they’ll be. Same with highlighters. I could go on, but you’ve got the idea. All of these things are difficult for HE and SHE to part with because they do have an intrinsic worth, just not one that we are going to capitalize on. (Ok, the paperclips I’m keeping. They’ll probably still be good in 100 years.)
I’ve gotten rid of about 150 hanging file folders (I think we’re safe with the 150 empty ones we have left plus the 400 or so that we have in current use), a box of boxes (arrived at our office June 2010 and never even opened), a bulletin board (last used???), old legal exhibits (once the case is over, they’re junk unless it goes to appeal), and a dozen three ring binders. Yes, there’s more I’d like to get rid of but in getting rid of what I did – decluttering and organizing the new closet – we have been able to eliminate the need for 2 tall storage units and a 36″ lateral filing cabinet.
Yes, HE and SHE may be uncomfortable with my approach to consolidating office supplies sometimes, but they sure like the results.
Today’s Mini Mission
Do you have too many stationery items ~ Folders, papers, pens, clips, staplers…? If so now is the time to weed out a few. I don’t know if this mission gave Cindy ideas for today’s post or whether it was a sheer coincidence but it sure has worked to promote a consistent theme throughout the entire post today.
Today’s Declutter Item
These items were relinquished during some recent decluttering in my craft room. Stay tuned for tomorrows post of the big craft room reveal.
Something to be grateful for today
I sent my car in for a six month extended warranty check today. It turned out I needed new brake pads and discs on the front and I have been having a stalling problem that they fixed as well. About $700 later I will get my care back. What is there to be grateful in that you might ask. Being able to afford mechanical repairs on my car when they are needed even if they are unexpected. Thank you my darling husband for being such a good provider, we are a great team.
“In daily life we must see that it is not happiness that makes us grateful, but gratefulness that makes us happy.” Brother David Steindl-Rast