Monday, September 9, 2013

Ask Linda: How DO I Get Started?

Dear Linda,

I've had the pleasure of enjoying your helpful tips via email. Presently, I'm semi-retired; a substitute teacher, HOWEVER, after 32+ years as an educator enjoying my own organized classroom/office space; I continue in my home trying to declutter and organize that space. My husband and adult daughter also contribute to the clutter here; but tend to always address their own priorities which do not include helping me declutter our home. So, as a new school year begins, my emotions seem to be tested and I'm looking for tips on how to prioritize the decluttering task and let go of much STUFF! Looking forward to your email reply.

Dear Reader:

Thank you so much for contacting me. I totally sympathize with you. One of the hardest things to do is to conquer your own space, especially when you have to work with others who do not have the same need that you have for clearing out the clutter. Believe it or not, I struggle with this as well. The sheer thought of starting can be immobilizing and lead to even further procrastination. Adding to that, the need to motivate what I call "disbelievers" (that clutter is a problem) may seem insurmountable.

Well, having said that, I do have some encouragement and practical suggestions.

  1. Start somewhere. It really doesn't much matter where, but I highly recommend picking a place that will make a great impact for you; and one that you deal with on a daily basis. For example, your kitchen, your "service" entryway, your desk, or even just your incoming paperwork. Whatever you pick, choose something that will make you happy once it is organized.

  2. Use the Paper Towel Tube technique. Originally described by Judith Kolberg in Conquering Chronic Disorganization, looking through your rooms with a paper towel tube narrows your visual field of vision so that you can easily focus on a tiny area and begin to make an impact there. I recommend doing this through your home and when you alight on something that makes your heart skip a beat, consider starting there.

  3.  After you have been working on your areas for a while, try to begin a conversation with your husband and daughter about how their clutter choices are affecting you. Try to come up with some mutually agreeable spaces that can remain clutter free, and some that they can keep the way they want. This may mean renegotiating how the spaces are currently divided up. Here is another post about helping my dad clear out his attic, which may be of interest.

  4. If you want to get a jump start on your project, consider booking a 4 hour session with me. The first part of my initial session is an assessment phase, where I would help you define your mission and goals. I can also help you and your family work together as a team.

Thank you for your awesome question and for allowing me to share it with others!

Can you relate to my reader? What is your experience with starting? Motivating others?
Please share by clicking on the "(No) Comments" link
~ Counter-intuitive, I know, but it's a Blogger quirk!

For help with getting started,
Simply call Linda, 716-631-5619.

No comments:

Post a Comment

Thank you for sharing your thoughts!