Why do we need to address our clutter in the first place?
First, the clutter in our surroundings easily cause stress and anxiety. It negatively impacts so much of our mental state, or overall health. Second, it drains our finances. The more expenses, the more clutter (and vice versa.) Third, the time we spend on managing or putting away our stuff could be spent to much more meaningful things. There are so many other reasons and I could go on and on as to why we need to declutter!
We will dive into more of these reasons in the podcast here:
In addressing clutter and overwhelm, let us first get into the root of the problem. So I created an acronym for the 6 REASONs why we tend to collect clutter:
R- retail Therapy
We often crave the adrenaline rush of buying something especially when it seems to be a good deal. But the thing is, it’s not a good deal when you don’t actually need it. And sometimes we buy things to fill a void inside of us when we are feeling lonely or emotional. And shopping can give us that temporary high.
So how do we overcome this? When you feel that rush to buy something, ask yourself,
Do I have a place for it?
Do I need it?
Can I afford it?
And to replace the feeling you get of wanting to go shopping, you could go with your other favorite thing to do (ex: reading, watching movie, socializing.) You may also want to tap into a passion project you have been putting off (but be careful not to start many projects at once!) Lastly, you could take this time to reconnect and bond with your family!
These are feelings that come up to us in different situations. According to research, the basic ones are: joy, trust, fear, surprise, sadness, disgust, anger, and anticipation.
We often attach our emotions to our stuff. So when something brings you joy, it’s easy (and okay) to keep them. But when it’s fear or other negative emotions that is attached to a thing, let it go. And the only way to do so is to be realistic.
It’s difficult, but pushing through is the only way to break through the challenges and reclaim your space!
A- assigned time
We don’t dedicate enough time for downsizing or minimizing our stuff so they tend to pile up. It may seem tedious, but small, consistent cleaning actually saves you more time than having to deal with a big pile of clutter everyday.
So how do you create time for this? You don’t. You have to make it a priority into your schedule. The difficult part is getting started, but once you push through, it becomes a habit and everything would flow easily.
Sentimentality with our stuff manifests in several ways: the keychains from our travels, the old stuff from our loved ones, the gifts from our friends, etc. And throwing them away is difficult because we connect ourselves with a person/memory through the stuff.
Especially when you are a mom, it’s a struggle to throw away the masterpieces of our kids… but there’s an even more struggle when we find ourselves dealing with a mountain of them.
One of the ways we could deal with this is to set a limit on how many bins you could save per child (depending on how many space you have.) Another is to set a time limit on how long you will display each piece of artwork before they get “filed.” *wink*
Find out in this episode what projects can you keep and stash away! (Plus, training our kids to declutter)
We need to remind ourselves that things will not keep the memory alive or things do not make us who we are. So it’s okay to let go of the sentiment and create a habit of decluttering!
We often feel confident in minimizing and organizing a project. But when we get started and go all the way to the process, it would then start to feel like hitting a brick wall. Suddenly, you are faced with the dilemma of not knowing where to start, how to declutter, and how to let go.
So how do we handle overwhelm?
- First, start small and start with a plan. Know where the stuff will go (i.e., donation, auction, landfill, etc) and make the plan simple!
- Then block off time so you can finish and concentrate on the category of items you are organizing
- Break it down into tiny tasks. Don’t look at the whole room when you are decluttering. Start in one area (like your desk.
Hop on to this episode to know how to make a decluttering plan, and how we can follow through it!
N- no, we can’t say it.
You know those moments when somebody gives you or your family something and you can’t say “No?” (most of the time, they are toys for your kids.) I get it. You don’t want more knick knacks to add to your clutter. But there’s a lot of guilt surrounding it because you don’t want to hurt the thoughtful person’s feelings, right?
But you have to focus on you and your family. And there are actual ways we can navigate it so don’t fret! You only have to let your friends or relatives know that you are starting to live that life of having less stuff.
To address this, you could tell them that you prefer creating memories with them instead of getting gifts. Or if they still prefer gifts, you can give them a list of the things that you need (also where they can find it) so the gifts will be purposeful.
So there you have the top 6 reasons why we tend to collect clutter. Which one is yours?
I also want you to remember that you might have your own reasons as to why you collect clutter. So it’s important to really dig deep into your situation and space. And I suggest taking on at least two at a time so you won’t get overwhelmed!
Let’s help you overcome
If you could relate on these struggles, reach out to me so I can help you overcome your triggers, and create the best plan for your decluttering journey. I love making life simple and easy, and I want you to have the same!
Join our Facebook group: Clutter-free Biz Cafe