Adding something you love to your life doesn’t just bring a whole lot of enjoyment to your days, it brings a whole lot of clarity as well.
When I started painting everyday, I loved it! So much so that I wanted more of it. As I looked around my life I found a lot of things I was doing that I either didn’t need to, and didn’t even want to do any more. The same went for my house. As I looked around my house I saw a lot of things that were just there…basically to fill up space. I didn’t love them and they took away my time and attention from painting and doing other things I was learning to enjoy.
So a decluttering challenge began!
*Tracy and I believe the key to start making lasting change is to add what you love to your days. I spent over a year just doing something I love to do before I got to the place of having both the clarity and energy to do a big house declutter. If you’ve just started to add something you love to your life, give yourself the time to build some confidence and energy before making this kind of goal for yourself.*
I challenged myself to get rid of 500 things by September 1st. I hit my goal by August 5th. I thought that was going to make a HUGE impact on what was in our home. Silly silly me! I didn’t even notice it! Most of it came from “unseen” places like sheds, attics, and closets.
I thought I was going to be dabbling into minimalism and in reality I hadn’t made a dent!
I took a look at what I saw as “clutter” in my home and the first thing I noticed was paper. Paper in piles, paper all over the fridge, paper…hold on to your seats…as books. So I’m dedicating September to purging my paper clutter.
Plan for the Month of September and What I’ve Done so Far.
1. Plan and organize my school items.
I’ve gotten all my school stuff organized and started planning as well. I have to place an order for some workbooks and make a trip to the library but that should be done this week.
2. Go through and make decisions on my paper piles.
I’ve eliminated 3 piles of paper. I still have a couple at my desk but that was inevitable with us creating a new website. ;) Also, this week’s goal.
3. Declutter 100 books! (Yikes!)
As of today I have gotten rid of 50 books! I’m sure I will be able to get rid of another 25 (for a total of 75) by the end of the month but I’m not sure I’ll make 100.
4. Declutter our filing cabinets
We have a filing cabinet with 4 drawers in the garage. I’ve decluttered the top drawer, 3 more to go.
5. Create a system for capturing and keeping all my ideas and notes. I think this will involve utilizing my iPad and Evernote a whole lot more. I haven’t really explored this area but now is the time to DO it.
I’ve been “playing” with Evernote and it looks like it will be great at helping me capture ideas. I have not yet developed a habit at the end of the day to organized my thoughts and ideas. That still needs to happen. I am using my iPad much more for capturing ideas and taking notes.
My Take Away So Far
Taking care of the paper/book clutter in my home has made a HUGE difference in how it looks. Countertops are clean, my desk is clean. My books shelves look radically different with 50 fewer books! It’s amazing. Purging the paper has made the difference I thought getting rid of 500 things would have. Don’t get me wrong, I’m thrilled to have gotten rid of 500 things, but it was clear to me that more than that needed to happen to create a decluttered home. Purging paper was clearly one of the keys I needed to use to create a more decluttered home.