Friday, September 25, 2015

5 Ways Clutter Costs

Take a minute. Look up from the screen. Look around.

Have you got clutter?

I do.

Clutter isn't just a mess--it's stress. And it costs me.

1. Time.

Who can find socks and underwear in this when you're running late in the morning and it is freezing cold to be standing on this concrete?

Argh--what's in that basket? Is it clean? Is it dirty?

2. Concentration.

Ever walk into a room and forget why you went there? That happens to me every time when I walk into a messy room. And when every room is messy?

True Story: We went without toilet paper in the upstairs bathroom for a few days because every time I wandered over to this closet where it is kept I was totally distracted. So someone started using kleenex. And then the upstairs toilet flooded. Twice.

Forget it!

3. Money.

How many can openers do you have? How many hammers? Tape measures? Paint brushes? I am always buying paint brushes. They're expensive! We also seem to have an abundance of tools--those are the things we can't keep track of and so buy more than we strictly need. The problem with this, of course, is that if you can't put one hammer back where it belongs, you don't put back the other four either--so who knows where any of them are?

4. Friendships.

Honestly, would you have anyone over?

Fortunately, even though I am mortified, I have decided that my kids' friends are always welcome, no matter how chaotic things are. But maybe, over the years, I should have made the kids tidy a bit, first?

5. Sanity.

I weep when this happens (and it happens a lot). I have to stop, wash these pots and pans and then I can make dinner. What could be a quick and easy meal after a long, tiring day at work becomes a dreaded chore.

In what ways does clutter cost you?
Ready to do something about it?

I am!

As I mentioned before, I've decided to declutter every day for the month of October and write about it. (I'll still keep up with the retrospective series.) These are meant to be quick, 15 minute decluttering sessions. I'm just going for the low hanging fruit, here. I may choose to go into messier, bigger projects as I have time, but I wanted to give the house a good going through before the holidays begin (though Canadian Thanksgiving does fall smack in the middle of October).

I've made up a schedule for decluttering. I've figured out how to make it a downloadable printable. (At least, I hope I have! If you have any problems, please let me know.) Click here or click the image below. You'll be taken to google docs.

Notice "your choice" every Friday. Notice, too, there's no attic, garage, or basement. There's no kids' toys or closets or spaces of any kind. 

However, I strongly recommend you become a clutter detective and use the second printable to customize your own decluttering journey. Just walk through each room and jot down what areas or what things you want to declutter. Then, schedule it on the printable. Click here for that or the image below. 

We start in less than a week.
(I know--where did September go?)

To be sure you don't miss a post in the series, have them delivered directly to your e-mail. Sign up below or in the sidebar. Glad to have you along.

Day 1: Let's Start
Day 2: Your Choice
Day 3: The Fridge is an Elephant
Day 4: The Freezer
Day 5: Recipes and Menu Planning
Day 6: The Food Storage Containers: Don't Declutter Just to Declutter.
Day 7: Any Kitchen Drawer
Day 8: Any Kitchen Cabinet
Day 9: Your Choice. My Choice? My Living Room
Day 10: Go Thru the Clothes Closet
Day 11: Declutter Your Dresser Drawers
Day 12: Declutter Your Handbags and Shoes.
Day 13: Declutter Your Nightstand
Day 14: The Medicine Cabinets: A Quick Win
Day 15: Simplify Your Make-Up, Simplify your Life.
Day 16: Your Choice. My Choice? The Painting Things.
Day 17: Clear Out the Coats
Day 18: Letting Go of the Linens.
Day 19: Declutter the Desk Drawers or Surface, Your Choice.
Day 20: Unpacking the Paper Pile
Day 21: Collect All the Digital Pictures. 
Day 22: Declutter Dvds, Cds, and other Media: Saying Goodbye to a Piece of Childhood.
Day 23: Your Choice. My Choice? The Top of my Desk.
Day 24: Craft Supplies or Tools, Your Choice
Day 25: Finish up an Unfinished Project.
Day 26: Declutter Magazines/Books/Bookshelves
Day 27: Declutter and Clean up the Laundry Room.
Day 28: Excavating the Purse
Day 29: Decluttering The Car: Not!
Day 30: Your Choice. My Choice? The Basement. Finally!
Day 31: Clear It All Out! 


Lisa @ Lisa Moves said...

We have NINE hammers. (Ahem.)

I clean the kitchen every single night before going to bed (not a deep clean and mopping, but all the dishes are loaded in the dishwasher, pots and pans washed, and counters wiped.) I don't enjoy it, but I hate coming downstairs in the morning to a dirty kitchen more.

Alana in Canada said...

Nine? Wow. That is impressive. We have three or four, plus two mallets--does just the head count? We have one of those, too. ((Why???))

That is an excellent evening habit. I often think if I had a dishwasher, I'd be able to cope better. I know I like packing things away--and it would make it easier to get them ALL done--as dinner dishes usually involve filling up the drying rack twice.

Chris K in Wisconsin said...

Clutter is a definite time waster and stress inducer. After listening to a few things the Pope said this past week, I look around and wonder WHY in the world we need so much STUFF!! So wasteful. I can identify with going out and buying something because I can't find the one I know we have. ugh.
Someone told me that CHAOS stands for Can't Have Anyone Over Syndrome.
So true.

Anne M Bray said...

I am also doing 31 Days of decluttering. I'm starting with the living room. If you think your house looks bad...

Alana in Canada said...

Clutter is personal. We all have different tolerance thresholds. You can do it, Anne. I've been helping my Mom climb out of years worth of accumulation and depression--so your place doesn't shock me at all. You do get to have more dramatic before and afters, than I do though, that's for sure!

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