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Research shows that 80% of what we have, we never use. Look in your clothes closet, the kitchen cupboards, the linen closet, the garage, the children’s playroom, the attic…Here are 10 tips to help you turn your clutter into a blessing for someone else:
- Start with your own stuff and don’t tell anyone what you are doing. Lead by example.
- If you don’t feel you can do it alone, invite a friend to join you. Offer to do the same for her. As my mother always said, “More hands make lighter work.” You may even have a child who is naturally organized, and would love the opportunity.
- Decide whether it would easier for you to do a little at a time – or set aside a larger block of time for sorting. Either works!
- Identify places that would appreciate having what you don’t need. Our county has a non-profit that helps victims of domestic violence. Check out www.thestuffstop.com.
- Before you begin, get a trash bag, for those things no one needs, and paper and marking pens.
- For every hour of organizing, allow ten minutes for “clean-up.” Set a timer as a reminder!
- Go through the area you have identified and ask, “Does this ______ help me accomplish my work or enjoy my life?” If your answer is “Not really,” you have an opportunity for a blessing.
- If you’re still not sure whether to keep something, ask “What’s the worst possible thing that would happen if I got rid of this, and I was wrong?” If you can live with your answer, let it go. If you’re still not sure, don’t stop – just go on to something else, and keep asking.
- If you find something that belongs somewhere else, don’t go there – just put it in a pile to take when you are finished. Make a sign to indicate destination.
- Before you go to your next activity, make a date with yourself to tackle the next cluttered area. Once you have gone through all the areas in your home, you can sustain your success by making it an annual event.