A Power Process for Clearing Clutter

October 21, 2008 at 9:06 am 6 comments

A dear goddess friend of mine has been working for several months to rid her life of clutter, once and for all.  She has been organizing her home a room at a time, with excellent success, in spite of the fact that she suffers terribly from asthma and allergies.  Today she is tackling her workspace in anticipation of an imminent career change, making it necessary for this area to function flawlessly, in spite of it’s small size.   Workspaces are second only to kitchens in their magnetic pull to frightening levels of clutter (but she’s already conquered the kitchen!).  They are a vicious sucking vortex for important papers, projects, memorabilia, and generally anything else you’d prefer NOT to lose, but ultimately somehow end up feeding the morass… 

If you have a workspace or other small area currently draining the energy from your home (as clutter notoriously does), here is a process to POWER your way to organization.  The only caveat is that it MUST be finished in a single day!  (More on that later.)

This was my response to her blog post:

You go girl!  Sniffle your way to organization!  (So you’ll be able to find the tissues when you need them. =P) 

Take everything OUT of your workspace.  Clear it down to the bare bones – furniture and walls.  Now, arrange the furniture the way you’d like, if it isn’t already.  Clean everything – dust your surfaces, clean your windows, vacuum…  Now go to your pile o’ shtuff that you eradicated from the room.  Using a SMALL box or bag, bring items /  papers back into the room a few things at a time.  Put them away in your totally clean space.  Have several LARGE garbage bags ready and label them Trash, Recycle, Donate, and Shred.  If there isn’t a place for it in your sparkling new workspace, it goes in one of these bags.  Be ruthless.

Why this works:  1.  Starting from a “perfect” space, and introducing items INTO it, acts as a psychological barrier to a certain level of clutter, which you might otherwise be inclined to just accept.  2.  Because you are not shuffling items from one surface to another, it is exponentially more efficient.  3.  Because you started from a clean slate both physically and mentally, you will be better able to locate the items you need going forward.

Why it MUST be done in a single day:  If you leave the mess you created in another part of the house, even for just a day or two, it will begin to infiltrate that aspect of your life instead… now all you’ve done is traded one cluttered area for another… ugh!  (Especially bad if you extradited the office clutter to an area you’ve previously organized!!)

Go get ’em tiger!!

So what area have YOU been turning a blind eye to for longer than you’d like to admit?  Reclaim it!  That’s YOUR space, YOUR energy, and YOUR life!

Have a passionate, prosperous, and powerful day!
a.k.a. The Average Goddess

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Entry filed under: Decorating, Organization, Time Management. Tags: , , , , , , , .

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6 Comments Add your own

  • 1. PaintandSoul  |  October 22, 2008 at 10:19 am

    I’ve been doing this for years, lol. I get fed up with the contents of a cabinet, a closet, the space under the bed, the desk drawer… and WHAM. I take it over, in less than a day, in another room. I had no idea it was the best way, hehe, so yay me!! I have a few places on my eventual list that are starting to work on my nerves.

  • 2. A Power Process for Clearing Clutter « The Paper Tiger Blog  |  September 9, 2009 at 9:49 am

    […] (full article at Average Goddess blog) […]

  • 3. Willow  |  June 5, 2010 at 6:03 pm

    After watching the U tube on organizing the suggestion was made to throw away the check book. Is this really possible? What about using the debit card or writing personal checks occasionally? I will start to pay my bills on line and have my bills e mailed to me. I think that is a great idea and I just didn’t think about how much easier that would be. So can I really not have a check book at all, that seems a little impossible or am I just not up on other new ways to use my e mail and banking service?

    • 4. averagegoddess  |  June 7, 2010 at 10:53 am

      Truly, it is possible. In the last 5 years, the ONLY things I have used my checkbook for are to make charitable contributions, and to pay workpeople who don’t accept credit cards (plumbers, painters, etc.). Even the DMV can be paid online. True story! You will not believe how much easier it is to track your expenses and cash flow, while simultaneously cutting down on all the paper in your life.

  • 5. Hpy2bmeamen  |  February 5, 2011 at 3:29 pm

    Average Goddess, so you say, the name does not do you justice. You are far from average in my book. Thank you for the great videos. I come from a family of hoarders. Life has been impossible and unbareable. I am fifty and wanting to get control of my disaster, before my parents pass. They are 78 & 79, with 41 years of hoarding and I am the only one to help them, also. This”life”has caused much depression and illness. For the first time I feel I have been taught tools that will allow me to do what I have to do. After divorce and the loss of my only child the passed 3 years I reverted back to a “life”of hoarding and it must end. I need peace and calm back in my life. I have had no support until I found you. Thank you. I hope now to live up to my name, again,”Hpy2bmeamen”.

    • 6. averagegoddess  |  February 5, 2011 at 3:39 pm

      Dearest Hpy – Thank you so much for sharing your story, and I’m thrilled that my videos have helped in any way. I know how difficult it can be to separate the “stuff,” from the “meaning.” Just remember, YOU are not your things, and your THINGS are not your memories. Nothing can take those away from you. Stay strong, stay focused on your goals, and pace yourself. One foot in front of the other will get you to the end of any journey. I wish you all the best!


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