"How wonderful it is that nobody need wait a single moment before starting to improve the world."

Anne Frank

Monday, July 25, 2011

How Do You Eat an Elephant? One Spoonful at a Time

"Listen up, people. You did not gain the weight overnight. So you can't expect to lose it overnight, either."
If you've ever attended a Weight Watcher's meeting, you've heard this.

Well, listen up,people. The same principle applies to clutter. All that stuff took time to accumulate. So it's going to take time to dispose of it. Whether you do it a little each day or have a marathon declutter with family and friends helping, it still takes time to sort, decide and purge/put away.

So where do I start? 
Beginning a new project, be it writing, cleaning out the storage shed (yes, I have one, sigh), or going grocery shopping, I find I do best if I take time to analyze the situation first. Yes, I know. I'm well known for jumping in feet first, eyes closed. I said it works best if I analyze first. Checking out the refrigerator before I go shopping keeps me from bringing home yet another carton of milk.

Once I know what needs to be done, why what I'm already doing may not be working, and what is, I can develop a working plan. This includes breaking the project down into manageable steps.

So what are those steps?
The SPACE formula is something I learned from Julie Morgenstern. It breaks each project into five steps.

  • Sort: Pick up each item and ask if it will help you reach your goal of a serene, happy home. If not... 
  • Purge: Out it goes either to Goodwill, the trash or someone who asks for it.
  • Assign:Keeping it? Give everything a home and put it there!
  • Containerize:Need containers to hold the keepables? List what you need, measure to be sure things will fit into the containers and the containers will fit where you need to put them. Take this list and a tape measure with you. Nothing is more frustrating than getting those boxes and baskets home and finding they won't fit. Remember to label.
  • Equalize: This is a fancy way to say maintenance. Map out a simple plan and set up a workable schedule. Now stick with it. It takes practice but before long your home will be clutter free and it will stay that way.

                                              Now grab that spoon!

1 comment:

  1. Hi Bren!

    I dropped by your blog after you "friended me" on Linked In. I'm glad I did!! Wonderful info!! Now, if I can just put this to work for myself. sigh

    Way to go!!!