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5 Tips for Letting Go of What is Holding You Back, in Order to Live With What You Love

1. If you want lasting change, shift your mindset.

Getting organized isn’t about changing your personality, it’s about changing your habits and the way you think! Most people don’t have an organizing problem, they have a too much stuff problem but they haven’t yet realized you can have the item OR the space, not both.

It may ultimately come down to being a smarter shopper or stopping shopping altogether. This leads to less stuff, less waste, less stress, and it ends the vicious cycle of “ I can’t get rid of this, it was so expensive!”

To get out of this cycle as you go through the items in your home, shift your thinking. As you purge, acknowledge you wasted the money in the store when you bought the item. Then, acknowledge your poor choices, deal with the consequences, and find a way to end the cycle. Cutting down on impulsive purchases and shopping as an emotional pick me up can make a huge impact on your home and your life.

If your dream home is not one that is filled with clutter, instead of thinking about what you will lose when you declutter, shift your mindset and try thinking about what you will gain.

2. Learn how to make quick decisions.

Clutter is nothing more than postponed decision making- it is created when you do not immediately know what to do with something. If you set it down for later, it all piles up and you very quickly become overwhelmed. Tidy people make quick decisions, follow through, and do not leave things for later.

In order to be able to make quick decisions, you must first designate a storage space for every category of item in your home and make sure they are clearly labeled for all family members to see. Items that do not belong in your home should be gotten rid of immediately and do not ever hold onto anything out of guilt. It’s your life to live and you alone get to decide what you want in it!

3. Keep what you use most often front and center.

Anything that is not in your daily routine should not be out, or located in the most easily accessible areas of your home. Create spaces in your home in out of the way areas for back stock and items that are not used daily and sort them by category. By doing this you will be able to see how little you actually use and need on a daily basis.

For example, under the kitchen sink should just contain what you use daily- paper towels, trash bags, dishwashing detergent, and all purpose cleaner. Everything else that you do not use daily should not be taking up valuable space making it difficult to find and access your “dailys.” Store those items in a place that isn’t as easily accessible. The same goes for your “dailys” in the bathroom.

4. Start decluttering and organizing in non-sentimental areas of the home and follow the organizing process.

Bathrooms, clothes closets, and kitchens are great places to start because these areas do not typically contain many sentimental items. Once you complete organizing one of these areas, you will feel more motivated to tackle the areas that might be more difficult and filled with things that are dear to you.

I always follow the same basic steps when organizing:

- Empty- take everything out and clean the space

  • Categorize and consolidate- make piles of all like items

  • Decide- purge, recycle, donate, sell, consign, or keep

  • Organize- measure and shop for products or use what you have

  • Maintain- tiny actions everyday keep your space organized for good

5. Keep it simple.

Organizing is very personal and different for everyone- the very best system is always the one that works best for you and your family. Keep in mind that sometimes it can take serval attempts to find the best one! One thing that I have found always to be true though, is that if simplifying your life is the end goal, any system that is complicated will not last.

Simple is maintainable. Simple is functional. Simple is beautiful.

Happy Organizing!

Lesley Drane

Clean Lines Organizing and Design



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