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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.

Obvious favorites

The mug that’s always on the counter.
The clothes that are always piled on the chair.
The shoes that are always just inside the door.

These are the ones you use all the time.
Apparently your favorite/go to/feel comfortable using.

Perhaps if you let go of a few of the mugs you rarely use,
(guess they aren’t so special after all).
Or a few of the clothes hanging in the closet,
(that literally never get worn).
And some of the pairs of shoes that aren’t really favorites:
You’d be able to give the things you do use and love a home.

You could clear some clutter off the counter,
actually sit in the chair,
and not trip over the pile of shoes by the door.

Remove some of your never used things
and make homes for the items you 
obviously use on a regular basis.

Good enough.

Many people who are challenged by clutter are self proclaimed perfectionists.
Which often results in clutter.
Ironic, I know.

They are waiting for the perfect filing system before they start dealing with their papers.
They are looking for the perfect set of containers before they start organizing their pantry.
If they could just find the perfect baskets they would tackle the messy shelf in the coat closet.

Give up on perfect and aim for good enough.

Perfect can be paralyzing,
Good enough moves you forward.

Start by getting rid of papers you don’t need to keep.
Toss out food that’s expired, stale or you know you’ll never eat.
Sort the hats, gloves, dog leashes and scarves in the closet; 
let go of the unmatched, never worn, or ugly.

Once you’ve sorted and pared down an area,
then use what you’re keeping to decide if you even need containers.
Perfect or otherwise.

Where is its home?

When you come across an item during the decluttering process
and you don’t know, or can’t think of, where its home should be;
maybe you don’t need to keep it.

Things you really need and use, you know where they belong.
Or where you’d look for them when you need them.
(Even if they aren’t currently in that location)

If something has a home-put it way.

If you can’t easily think of a home for something, 
could mean you may not even remember you have it,
when or if the time comes to use it.

Create logical (to you) homes for the items that you use.
Let go of the rest.

Living space

Your home is a living space, not a storage space.  Francine Jay

Look around.
Make sure that there is more room in your home devoted to living, 
than there is to storing.

How many things are you keeping ‘just in case’?
Are your purchases crowding the spaces
you could be using for living?
(Piles on chairs?  Stacks on counters? Bags on the floors?)

Make room in your home so you feel comfortable there.
Create space to do what you enjoy, with the people you love.

More living.
Less storing.

Living without

It’s better to live without something you might use,
than to be surrounded by things you don’t use.

Read between the lines

(Thanks Lynette for sharing this)

Lynette Thomas

Abandon the project

Let that project go.
Face the fact that you are not going to spend the time, 
the energy, or any more money trying to finish something
that no longer interests or engages you.

You won’t finish that knitting project.
You aren’t going to scrapbook that vacation from 2010.
That stack of six month’s worth of magazines? Just isn’t in your reading future.

It’s okay.
Interests change.
Priorites get reevaluated.
What we care about shifts.
It’s okay to realize and recognize who we are now.

Stop beating yourself up over not finishing.
Quit thinking that just because it was important; it’s still important.
(Seriously, if it was important you’d have done it)

Permission granted to walk away from unfinished projects.
To give away, or throw away, the materials and supplies.

Letting go of things you aren’t going to do,
will open up space in your home and your life.
(On several levels…..)

Time flies.

Time flies. (whether you are having fun or not)

And no, we can’t always be having fun.  Darn it.
After all, there’s laundry to do, and toilets to clean,
and the regular mechanics of daily living.

However, we can make more conscious choices about 
where and how we do spend our time and energy.

What tasks can we simplify?
(You don’t have to fold your underwear.
You could pay someone to clean your toilets)

Less stuff in your house, means less to maintain.
Fewer obligations means more time for the people and activites
that feed your heart.

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

​Spend wisely.

Then and Now

That was then.
This is now.

Then I played tennis.
Now I do yoga.

Then I cooked for five people.
Now I make meals for two.

Then I dressed for the office.
Now I am retired.

Then I _____________.
Now I _____________.

Time passes.
Things change.

What we once used regularly, we  now seldom touch or rarely need.
There are people out there who are playing tennis, or cooking for a large family
or who need professional clothing.
Letting go of what you no longer use, 
makes it available to people who need it now.

Remember the fun and pleasure you received from an activity,
and give someone else a chance to experience it too.

Don’t let all your stuff from then,
fill the space for what you could be doing now.

Five minute pick up

Dana K. White, 
the author of several funny, practical and compassionate books about decluttering,
suggests five minutes of picking up every day.

She doesn’t care when you do it, or which room; she merely suggests that if you spend five minutes every day, it will make a visible difference in your home.

Starting small, when things feel overwhelming, can be just the boost you need
to keep going.

Use the five minutes to pick up any trash/recycling in the space.
If there’s still time once you’ve dealt with that stuff,
grab things that don’t belong in that space and put them in their homes.
If you find something that doesn’t have a home:
Create one for it-where you would look if ever you wanted the item.
Or consider that it is homeless because it doesn’t really need to be in your house.
(See trash/recycle)

Will five minutes give you an immaculate home?
Obviously not.
But it will clear some clutter from at least one place.
And that’s a start.