Decide, divide & Conquer

Continue reading with these posts:

  • Positive attitude to decluttering Here is a great comment from Kimberley that I didn't want anyone to miss... "Selling vs. Donating….. When we acquire an item, there was an obvious need for us to do so, real or […]
  • Disposing of this weeks mission yields In a post a couple of weeks ago that asked a range of question about your clutter issues and my blog. One of the readers asked for more information on how to get rid of the clutter that […]
  • Life moves on I received the following comment from Kimberley to one of last week's posts ~ Who Are You Now. Kinberley wrote: "Your post should be titled, “Isn’t this how clutter begins?”  We move […]
About Colleen Madsen

Colleen is the founder of 365 Less Things and lives in Newcastle, Australia.


  1. Colleen, thanks for the link to David’s post. It was very good. I like your post too. I do this kind of thing with most items on my mental “to do” list. I remember when I was working. Early on I was sent to a Franklin Covey seminar to learn how to use their system (pre-PDA’s). I found that I had been doing it all my life but their system just made it easier to keep everything in one spot. Then I “graduated” to a PDA when those came out. I was amazing how easy it was to keep things going and keep on track when the decision had been made and the work divided into steps. I still do this even though I have a lot less to keep track of only I now do it in my Outlook program.

  2. I always enjoy Raptitudes take on things, I enjoyed the head for the peak until you hit an obstacle and then go to the right until you are round it. Decluttering is full of obstacles and a lot of people give up at this point but if you keep the mind set to get around the problem and to continue progressing eventually you will win.

    • HI Moni, with decluttering when I hit a difficult item I just made a metal note of it and moved on to something else until the solution presented itself. That way I continued to make progress.

      • Colleen – fair call, but I can recall an occasion whereby I couldn’t get rid of item A because of Item B which couldn’t be dealt with because of C which likewise required something to happen to D first which needed item A to be dealt with first. Aaaarrrgh! Can’t remember how long I went around and around in circles. I’m pretty sure it went beyond D to a little bit further down the alphabet but you get the picture.

        • I certainly do Moni. I hit a couple like that myself but at a thing a day I just waited patiently until my ducks were all in a row and voila. I will stress the fact that it did take some patience at times.

  3. I am a secretary so I work really well with instructions, a plan, a path, whathaveyou. Sure I can do free-thinking work on my own. But if I am seeking a specific result, I am certainly happy to follow instructions. For instance, I am a big fan of both Dave Ramsey and Larry Winget. Both gentlemen advise if you want to be smart, do what smart people do. If you want to be rich, do what rich people do. If you want to be organized, do what organized people do. The idea of deciding what you want, determining how you can get it, and implementing a plan to achieve a result, may it be simply putting on a meal or event for friends/family, be it a financial goal, be it a home organizational goal, I think is a fantastic way to do it. If I don’t have a good plan in place, I tend to become the Tasmanian Devil and whirl around dramatically while accomplishing absolutely nothing. (Ya’ll understand I’m talking about the cartoon, right?) 😉

    • Michelle – I used to love Tasmanian Devil on tv and so yes I have the visual in my head, and yes I can relate. In some areas of my life I am like you, organised, sequential thinker and then I seem to unleash the kraken and suddenly Hurricane Moni finds herself surrounded by chaos and wondering how she got there.

    • I have been known to do the Tassie Devil myself at times when there is no plan in place. Usually this takes place when I have a goal in mind but there are so many options that I just throw myself in a make it up as I go along. Sometimes that means changing my mind and redoing but there are times when that is quicker than trying to figure it out beforehand. I think this happened once or twice with my craft room during its gradual yet massive declutter.

  4. This is a very helpful approach to decluttering. I find myself pondering the usefulness of items as I am going about the house doing other tasks and then it is so much easier to put them in the donation box because I have already done the thinking, made the decision and detached myself from the stuff. It makes the job much less overwhelming.