Thursday, March 12, 2015

Keeping the declutter momentum

Finally, the boxes are on their way out

The problem with getting rid of some very nice things is that they can be hard to part with. The last tidy up day in my studio was almost two weeks ago. I went through my fabrics (for clothing, handbags) again, making a second pass at discarding while putting the remaining fabrics away. First pass: no-brainer, easy-to-get-rid-of fabrics. Second pass: asking the crucial questions of the things I thought I wanted to keep on the first pass—does this spark joy, do I really want to commit the time to this, is this for me or for my fantasy self—while putting the fabrics away in their new Home. The second pass deals with the nicer, harder-to-part-with fabrics. Second pass resulted in more boxes of fabrics to share with friends and other fiber artists.

The full boxes were queued up in the dining room, ready to be moved to the car so I could take them to the next Fiber Arts meeting. And, there they sat (and sat), waiting for the meeting day. I kept eyeing those boxes and thinking I should look through to be sure I didn't want to keep anything. So tempting, the seed of doubt was sown. Then our guests from out of town arrived, and I moved the boxes into my car to clear the dining room. I had to miss the meeting. The seed of doubt was growing; I need to look through those boxes again before I take them away.

OK, time for a new rule: Once you have decided to get rid of something, get it out of the house right away because:
  • Keeping the full “donate” boxes (queued up in the dining room) adds visual clutter;
  • Keeping the full boxes around tempts you to look in there and reconsider some items;
  • Keeping the full boxes for too long makes it harder to remove them from the house;
  • Keeping the boxes makes you feel stuck or stalled, the job uncompleted; whereas
  • Removing the boxes right away erases them from your mind (mental clutter);
  • Removing them right away makes your progress visible;
  • Removing them right away gives you a nudge to declutter some more.

My declutter project has been stalled for almost two weeks. I'm not sure whether to call this Resistance, or Self-Sabotage, but it's time to face up to it and get started again. 

“Clutter is almost always a symptom of delayed decisions.” – Brooks Duncan 


  1. "You go girl"!!! Don't consider it a 'stalling' but a lesson to yourself - once its in a box its out the door and on to a new home (or someone else's clutter *smile*).

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