So many people know that their homes are over cluttered, they can feel the oppression of it, but they just can’t bring themselves to deal with what seems like such a monumental task. Just last week I was having a phone conversation with my mother-in-law about this. She often reports to me what she has been decluttering lately but she still looks at the stuff around her and the items she has mounting up in the garage to sell or donate and thinks “It is such a big task still ahead!”. I told her the same thing I tell my readers “It isn’t you know, it is just one thing a day.”
She was proudly telling me how she had decluttered one hundred doll magazines that week ~ she collects, makes and dresses dolls. She decided that she just wasn’t looking through them any more and they were just collecting dust. She was clever enough to offer them to a friend that is also a doll collector to either keep for herself or donate them to the doll club. How easy was that, here one day gone the next. I pointed out to her that a little more clever thinking like that ~ to find outlets for her clutter ~ and she will see improvements in no time. Just remember how good it felt to get rid of those magazines and capitalise on that feeling.
Later that same day I read a blog post by The Minimalist about cultivating a passion to follow. It got me thinking that decluttering very quickly became a passion for me, not a chore, when I came up with the idea of doing it the easy way, one thing at a time. I have never looked back, in fact on that day and every day since I have actually enjoyed the challenge.
I get a buzz every time I choose that one thing to declutter each day and again when I send it on its way. It isn’t about being excited to one day finally reach the finish line, it’s about enjoying every step I take along the way.
I am finding it hard to put this into words but the gist of what I am saying is to celebrate every little achievement, every item, everyday. The payoff can be everyday not just at the end ~ everyday! It is like getting an excited tingle whenever you think about an upcoming enjoyable event rather than whining about the event being so far off. Like being happy to put money in the bank to save for a trip rather than just focusing on the treats you might be missing out on in order to do this. Like relishing the changes and sensations in your body as a baby grows inside you rather than just wishing that the pregnancy was over and you could just be enjoying your new baby.
Although I love it when I can see that I have made a difference most days I can’t. One small thing in a drawer doesn’t change the look of things much. However, I know that there is one less thing cluttering up my home and that is enough for me to get that warm fuzzy feeling of achievement.
What better encouragement is there than to see what is potentially a chore as a treat. If you can savour every moment then the finish line will just be the end of a wonderful journey.
Today’s Mini Mission
Declutter something made from wood.
Today’s Declutter Item
I was using one of these pot stands on a regular basis while the other sat dormant in a drawer. In another drawer was a metal trivet that I use once a year when I make our Christmas pudding. These couldn’t replace the need for the trivet but the trivet could replace the need for these. So out they go. The trivet is now in daily use and there is more space in my drawer. Once again I was very pleased with myself with this mission accomplished. That was my little buzz for the day.
Eco Tip for the Day
Just like my decluttering approach you can gradually improve your carbon footprint by implementing a new environmentally friendly routine into your life on a regular basis. It doesn’t have to be a chore but a fun challenge to not only help the planet but quite often it turns out will also save you money.
“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