Organizing @ Home: Chase Away Organizing Nightmares

Posted By on August 22, 2014

I had an organizing nightmare.

In my dream, I was packing my stuff and trying to place everything in order in the giant box I was using. Once I was done, I turned around and was dismayed to find several cabinets filled with more tchotchkes.

When I woke up, it took me a moment to shake it off, and then I chuckled to myself. Yes, definitely an organizing nightmare. Downsizing your stuff doesn’t have to become a nightmare.

Do you love it? When surveying your stuff, ask yourself the big question: Do you love it? If you don’t love it, why do you have it? If looking at it gives you a bad feeling, why do you keep it?

Have you fallen out of love? It happens. We grow and change. Suddenly, the things we treasured lose their emotional luster and become annoying burdens. It’s okay to end your relationship and move on.

Do you want it? It may seem straightforward, but stuff and emotions are tied together. You may feel obligated to keep something because it was a gift or passed down to you. First, it’s okay to say “no” if you’re offered something you don’t really want. Secondly, you don’t have to keep something forever. It’s okay to let it go. Someone else will want it, love it and use it.

Was it an intention? We have those projects that we intended to do but never did. Yes, you may have intended to create scrapbooks documenting every big moment, but it never happened despite the numerous scrapbooks, paper and stickers you bought. Give yourself a huge gift by letting go of old projects. Don’t view it as a failure. If it was really important to you, you would have done it.

You can also change the scope of the intended project. Going back to the scrapbook project, numerous websites are available to create books out of your photos.

What about those books? My family never got rid of books. You keep books forever like a library. Living on my own in a one-bedroom apartment, I realized that you can’t keep everything forever, even books. As I surveyed my own book collection, I saw several books that I didn’t like sitting on my shelf, taking up valuable space. Why would I keep books that I didn’t like? Why would I keep books I knew I wouldn’t read or use again?

These days, I view books as temporary guests. They drift into my life and then find their way to others. For the books I do keep, they have to be special friends.

Can it be repurposed? I like it when I can use an object in another way. If you need ideas, just search “repurpose” on Pinterest.  A fresh coat of paint and an idea can revive an object’s usefulness in your life.

How do I get started? Tackle one room at a time to keep your organizing project less overwhelming. Set a timer and spend 15 to 30 minutes at a time. Have boxes or baskets at the ready for donation, recycling and trash.

Doing a little at a time helps you move forward.

Creating your dream space will chase away those organizing nightmares. Sleep well, my friends.



One Response to “Organizing @ Home: Chase Away Organizing Nightmares”

  1. Ellen Delap says:

    Yes, there are really organizing nightmares! But you are so right when you get clarity on what to keep and what to let go of. It takes baby steps but you can do it!

    Thanks for sharing all the ways to make good decisions.