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What I know:

It isn't about our stuff.
It's about our connections.

Bigger. Better. More.
Rarely is.

Our best lives create space
in our homes and hearts
for the people and activities
that make us genuinely happy.

You must be present to win.

You are not what you own.

Unread books don’t make you smarter.
Unused kitchen tools don’t make you a better cook.
Unused food in the pantry doesn’t make you more healthy.
Unused sports equipment doesn’t mean you’re in good shape.

It isn’t about all we own; it’s about what we actually do with what we have.
We are not human havings, we are human beings….

Edit out the stuff in your life you don’t use, need, love or value.
Experience what it feels like to live with more empty space,
and time to spend doing the things that lift your spirit.

Time Management

Better time management won’t solve your clutter problem,
nor will it make you more organized.

You don’t manage time,
you manage your behavior.

Paying attention to and changing your behaviors is how real change happens.

At its heart, decluttering and being more organized are visible proof of how you manage your behaviors. 

Putting things away when you finish using them, is managing your behavior.
Hanging up your clothes instead of dropping them in a chair, is managing your behavior.
Calling a friend to see how they are, is managing your behavior.
Habits and routines are ways to manage your behavior.

Choose to make your actions reflect your values.
Behave in ways that support the life you want to be living.

Quality over quantity

Being better organized is about making better decisions.
Choosing to store frequently used things in accessible places.
Taking care of something now, instead of leaving it until later.
Knowing how many is enough.

And just as important, it is about being thoughtful and conscious about where we spend our money.
Cheap things are cheap, for a reason.
In the long run, cheap is expensive.
Consider the hidden costs of what we buy, who actually is making it, where and under what conditions.
What is the real price of owning more than we really need?
When cheap things wear out, break, or stop working; where do they end up?
When you throw things ‘away’, there is no real away.
It ends up in a landfill somewhere.

Better quality items last longer,
usually feel, look and function more smoothly,
are easier to maintain,
and need replacing less frequently,

Make an effort to buy the best quality you can afford.
(and if you’re buying something just because it’s cheap, 
maybe you don’t really need it after all)
Spending a bit more now can often save you
from having to spend money again and again on the same items.

Be generous.

You have a rich and abundant life.

Everyday tiny miracles happen to you and around you.
The sun rises every morning,
and gravity holds you to the earth.
You have connections to people and
relationships that move your heart and soul.

You get the chance every day to be kind.
Often with very little effort on your part.
Okay, it’s harder some days and with some people.
(Remember, some days, you’re the hard to deal with person)

Generosity isn’t just about money.
We can be generous with our attention, our time,
our support and our encouragement.

All of our lives are incredibly rich.
On so many levels.
Gratitude encourages generosity.
Choose the generous option.
Practice acting from an open and generous heart.

Thoughtful spending

“How we spend our days is, of course, how we spend our lives.”Annie Dillard

How are you spending your life?
Who gets your attention?
What does your money buy?
Where do you spend your time?

What exactly are you waiting for
to start living the life you say you want?

There will always be reasons and excuses why you can’t start today.
Why tomorrow or ten pounds or better equipment
or a better system is what you need to really be successful.
When in truth, you already know and have everything you need to start.

Quit wasting days waiting,
and start spending days being and doing and living.
It is your one amazing life, after all.

Focus on what you are keeping.

Letting go can be a challenge;
things, ideas, relationships.

Sometimes we aren’t even aware of how tightly we are holding on,
until we are given a chance to let it go.
Or how attached we’ve become a way of acting or thinking,
with whom and where we spend our time,
until we see there might be other options.

Decluttering ask us to let go of the things, ideas, and relationships 
that we longer find to be of value in our lives.
Things we no longer love or that support the life we really want to be living.

Too often we focus on what we’re letting go of,
and don’t keep our attention on what it is we’ve decided to keep.

The clothes that fit and we look good in.
Our favorite mug for tea.
Supplies for hobbies we take the time to do.
People who lift us up and being with them fills our hearts.

If we can keep our attention on what we have decided is important.
If we remember that abundance isn’t about how many, but about having just the right amount.
That letting go will create the space we are longing for,
and giving away or giving up or just saying enough already,
matters so much more than what we are letting go.

That was then. This is now.

Give yourself permission to give away with an open heart.
Keep your awareness on what you’re consciously choosing to include in your life.
Let go.
Move forward.

Close the circle.

Great beginning,
Good middle.

One of the best ways to keep clutter to a minimum is to close the circle.
Complete the task.
Put things away when you finish.

It may be as simple as putting the dirty dish into the dishwasher, 
not just setting it on the counter.
Don’t just wash and fold the laundry, put in away.
It’s great that you separated out the junk mail,
but put it into the recycle container.

Many of our day to day, habits of daily living involve
getting something, using it, and then putting it back where it lives.
It is when we fail to complete that circle that things start to pile up,
messiness begins, and clutter starts.

By practicing closing the circle we can simplify our lives and our routines.
Putting things away when we finish with them,
means they will be in their homes when we need them again.
Completing tasks now means fewer loose ends later.

Close the circle.

Like with like.

Like with like.

All the pasta in the pantry.

All the camping gear in a clear bin in the garage.

All the gardening tools hung next to each other.

All your long sleeve shirts together in one section of the closet.

All the office supplies on one shelf.

All the bathroom cleaning supplies in a tote under the sink.

All your current bills that need to be paid in one folder.

All your 2021 tax related receipts in one hanging file.

Keep like with like.

Store things where you use them.

Make it easy to find what you need and 

easy to put things away when you’ve finished with them.

By storing like with like you will spend less time hunting

for things you know you have but can’t find.

You will spend less money buying duplicates of things you already own.

You will have a visual of how many is enough.

Make your systems and your solutions to storage challenges

as simple as possible.

Don’t overthink the options.

Keep like with like.

One way to start.

Starting can be a challenge.
Despite knowing we want change,
we can’t seem to take the first step.

My suggestion:  Start small.
Of course you’d like to get your clothing situation pared down and organized.
You’d love it if the family room didn’t feel like chaos.
If some closets didn’t make you nervous opening the door.

Start with one drawer.  One shelf.
Tackle your sock situation.
Sort through one of the toy bins.
Go through the hats, mittens, dog leashes, baseball hats
and nest of scarves on the top shelf of the coat closet.

Toss the unmatched, the too saggy, too tight, the worn,
the unopened gift pairs of socks.
Part with the out grown, broken, age inappropriate toys.
Keep what you honestly wear, use and looks great on you.

Tomorrow work on a different drawer, another bin and choose another shelf.
Keep in mind:  
How many is enough?
Am I holding on to this just in case?
Would I buy this now?
Does it earn the space it’s taking up?

The situation didn’t get this way in one day.
It will take more than one day to create the easy, spacious feeling you desire.
Start small.
Build on your successes.
One drawer, one bin, one shelf at a time.
You can do this.

Stop comparing.

There’s your physical clutter, emotional clutter and mental clutter.

They all are connected, related, and feed into each other.
(Darn it)
Dealing with one will help you manage the others.

A great place to start:
Stop comparing yourself to others.

The things you never do,
always do, should do.
Your house, your job, your bank balance.

Pay attention to the constant stream of judgments,
criticism, and measuring yourself that goes on in your head.
When you notice that voice:
Take a breath.
Remember your goodness.
Cut yourself some slack.
Put down the beating yourself up stick.

The person who lives in your head, lives in your house.
Make them both welcoming spaces.

Just as decluttering your physical room opens up space;
letting go of mental clutter opens up your mind.
Stop comparing and start creating that life.