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The Decluttering Question of the Day

Posted by Pam Young

Apr 12, 2017 5:00:00 AM

 

 

Would you buy this at Goodwill?

 

In a recent blog I wrote about declutteringg I said, “In deciding what to keep and what to get rid of, ask this question: ‘Would I buy this at Goodwill?’” Just that question opens your eyes to the item you’re looking at. If you were at Goodwill, would you buy this? Because when you’re buying something secondhand, you take your blinders off and put your examination lenses on.

I Was Blind and Now I See!  

At home, your blinders allow you to relax in private and not see what you don’t want to see, just like your sunglasses keep the sun from hurting your eyes. Your home isn’t subject to scrutiny until you’re going to have company at which time you get out your examination glasses and see with “company eyes.”

If you'll put your timer on for 15 minutes and spend that time looking for stuff you wouldn’t buy at Goodwill, you’ll probably be able to fill up a box to give away or pitch. As I wrote that sentence, it inspired me to do just that. So, I’ll be back in 15 minutes if I don’t get sidetracked and end up taking a bath or sweeping the deck.

 

I Hope You'll Want To Read More...

Topics: De-Cluttering

Let Go! It's Spring!

Posted by Pam Young

Apr 10, 2017 5:24:00 AM

 

It's time to make room for spring! Mother Nature spent all winter getting ready for this wonderful time of year and we can learn from her. When you let go of the past you create a place for what's waiting to come to you now.

Many have a hard time letting go and it really doesn’t have to be that way. Of course letting go of a person whom you love and he no longer loves you is a boo hoo, hard kind of letting go and it may take more than a season to get over, but you know the saying: If he doesn't love you, let him fly away, unless you want to play zoo keeper. But the decluttering kind of letting go can actually be fun, because of a test question you can ask every time you get stuck holding onto an item that needs to go.

 

You'll learn what that test question is in a minute. First, here's a little story. Because of a contest called Project CHAOS (Can’t Have Anyone Over Syndrome) I’ve been in over 100 homes that were crammed with too much stuff. My sister and I would pick a winner in a city and armed with television cameras, newspaper journalists and photographers; we’d go into the home of the winning family and de-junk a room. The “befores” and “afters” were always media fodder.

 

I remember one specific winner vividly. She was a physician (even doctors can have too much stuff) and she wanted us to help her with her personal, walk-in closet. It was jam-packed with fashions that spanned two decades and four sizes. She dressed well. Her clothes were purchased at high-end dress shops and department stores and most were designer.

 

I Hope You'll Want To Read More...

Topics: De-Cluttering

Bless This House   5 Basic Needs of a SHE

Posted by Pam Young

Mar 29, 2017 5:00:00 AM

 

Wanting What Others Have Hurts You

 

“You have succeeded in life when all you really want is only what you really need.” That quote is by Vernon Howard and he was probably never dazzled by brochures for fancy vacations or a catalogue from William Sonoma. We are continually tempted to buy what we don’t need. 

There was a recent ad on the Internet hawking the latest autumn purses (referred to as bags). It said in the email subject line: 9 Bags You Must Own This Fall. With suggestions like this, it’s no wonder we can hardly move in our closets!

  

Really the only thing we need to buy regularly is food and gas. Vernon would not be happy with some of my purchases. Like this crab hat my granddaughter Sophia is wearing. What was I thinking? I know, ‘I’ve gotta have it!’

  

Vernon’s quote resonates with SHEs (Sidetracked Home Executives) because we’ve experienced the clutter and resulting chaos that comes with not learning when enough is enough and being tempted by advertising. Yeah, we have duplicates of many items but that’s only because we lose an item and have to buy another. And yeah, we have more babies than BOs (Born Organized) because we never pay much attention to a calendar.

I Hope You'll Want To Read More...

Topics: De-Cluttering, Happiness

Suffer from Garage Constipation?

Posted by Pam Young

Feb 8, 2017 4:00:00 AM

 

 

 

 

If you drive down any neighborhood street in America, no matter what the cost of the homes, you’ll find at least 50% of the drive-ways have a car parked in them. That doesn’t mean the people in the homes have company, it most likely means the garages are full of stuff and there’s no room for the cars.

I was recently on a television talk show in Portland, Oregon and I talked about how we Americans have too much stuff. The hostess of the show told me she’s embarrassed to pull out of her garage because it’s crammed full. I said, “Well at least you can get your car in the garage!” She said, “It barely fits and it's a three-car garage!”

I Hope You'll Want To Read More...

Topics: De-Cluttering

10 Easy Ways to Declutter Your Home!

Posted by Pam Young

Sep 14, 2016 5:30:00 AM

 

It’s no secret that countless families are deluged by household clutter.

 

Flylady says; “The most common clutter hot spots are children's bedrooms, home offices, attics, and garages.” What does it take to create a clutter-free space? Here are my 10 best home organization strategies straight from my book, The Joy of Being Disorganized.

Please accept this free chapter from my new book.

1. Stop Homelessness

One of the main reasons stuff piles up on counters, dining tables, coffee tables and floors is that it’s homeless. When an item has no "home," it gets added to an IPOD
 (Important Pile Of Decisions). The free chapter I'm giving you has great information about the IPODs in your home and how to eliminate them. That’s why it’s important to make sure everything in your home lives somewhere. “Homing” items in the room where they're used, helps ensure that they get put away when you're finished. For example, I keep a sewing kit in a drawer of an end table in my living room, because I like to mend garments in that room and not in my sewing room in the basement.

  

 

2. Stop Clutter at the Cash Register

Use that, waiting-to-buy time when you’re standing in line at the cash register, to re-think what’s in your hands or cart. Imagine it as clutter. What you buy today can turn
into clutter tomorrow. The better you are about keeping things out of your home, the less likely you’ll be to create IPODs when you get home.

 

 

3. Baby Step your Way to Clutter-free

Start with the room that’s bothering you the most. (In my almost 40-year career helping moms get organized, the kitchen is the room most picked by baby-steppers.) Marla Cilley, the Flylady
says, “Start by shining your kitchen sink.” That’s so brilliant! In order to keep your sink shiny, you have to keep it empty. In order to keep it empty, you and your family have to put dirty dishes in the dishwasher. In order to put dirty dishes in the dishwasher, it has to be empty!

I Hope You'll Want To Read More...

Topics: On Being Organized / Disorganized, De-Cluttering

Flylady Keeps Clutter at Bay

Posted by Pam Young

Jul 22, 2016 4:30:00 AM

 

 

My sister and I had a SLOB (Spontaneous Lighthearted Optimistic Beloved) Convention in Portland, Oregon and invited Marla Cilley, the Flylady to speak. Her words are so wise and so worth heeding. Watch this video and see if you see yourself in her talk.

I Hope You'll Want To Read More...

Topics: De-Cluttering

How to Dejunk Your Kitchen

Posted by Pam Young

Jul 18, 2016 4:30:00 AM

 

Is your kitchen streamlined, efficient and a joy to cook in?

 

 

A couple of months ago, I took you on a pity trip and so many of you went with me! I loved all your responses and I think the "trip" helped many pare down the contents of their clothes closets! You all are so fun! If you didn't take the pity trip with me and if your clothes closet contains more than what you love and wear often, be sure to read my blog: Let's Take a Pity Trip.

Today I’m throwing a pity party and I hope you’ll have one too.This exercise is designed to help you dejunk your kitchen. Let’s pretend we’re going to throw a huge dinner party, only, just like on the pity trip you have to pretend you’re disadvantaged and this party is going to be as wretched as you can make it. 

 

You’ll be Serving Bad Food

First, you’ll need to search in the cupboards and freezer for old food. You know any cans or packaged products with words like “best by 7/14,” and frozen stuff you don’t recognize (and never will). Of course all the bad food needs to go in the garbage, but there’s nothing stopping you from pretending you’re going to make a giant and disgusting casserole out of all of it for the big pity event. 

Second, you’re going to look at all your serving dishes with new eyes. Are there bowls, and plates that you never use, not even during the holidays? Are your glasses foggy from age? A good way to look at your stuff with new eyes is to pretend you’re at a thrift store and ask yourself, as you look at each plate, bowl and glass, “would I buy this?” See if you can fill a big garbage bag with kitchen utensils, silverware, glasses, mugs, chipped bowls and plates, and pans you haven’t used since 7/05. 

 

On the 4th of July of this year, Terry and I had a dinner party for two other couples. As I was looking in my kitchen cupboards with entertaining in mind, I realized there were so many serving pieces I just don’t use anymore and I promised myself that after the party, I was going to dejunk my kitchen of them. That’s when I decided to pretend to have a pity party. It helped me get to the bottom of why I wasn’t using a lot of what I passed over in preparing for the 4th.

 

Go Backwards

I Hope You'll Want To Read More...

Topics: De-Cluttering, Organization

Letting Go Can be Easy

Posted by Pam Young

Jul 11, 2016 5:00:00 AM

 

Many have a hard time letting go and it really doesn’t have to be that way. Now letting go of a person whom you love and he no longer loves you is a boo hoo, hard kind of letting go and it may take time to get over, but you know the saying: If he doesn't love you, let him fly away, unless you want to play zoo keeper. But the decluttering kind of letting go can actually be fun, because of a test question you can ask every time you get stuck holding onto an item that needs to go.

 

You'll learn what that test question is in a minute. First, here's a little story. Because of a contest called Project CHAOS (Can’t Have Anyone Over Syndrome) I’ve been in over 100 homes that were crammed with too much stuff. My sister and I would pick a winner in a city and armed with television cameras, newspaper journalists and photographers; we’d go into the home of the winning family and de-junk a room. The “befores” and “afters” were always media fodder.

 

I remember one specific winner vividly. She was a physician (even doctors can have too much stuff) and she wanted us to help her with her personal, walk-in closet. It was jam-packed with fashions that spanned two decades and four sizes. She dressed well. Her clothes were purchased at high-end dress shops and department stores and most were designer.

 

I Hope You'll Want To Read More...

Topics: De-Cluttering

4 Reasons You're STILL Disorganized!

Posted by Pam Young

Mar 14, 2016 6:00:00 AM

  

 

 

 

1. You are denying disorganization is affecting your life in a negative way.

2. You are comparing your organizational skills to reality show hoarders. 

3. You are blaming your family for the mess  you’re in.

4. You are minimizing the problem and the gifts you possess to solve them.

In Alcoholics Anonymous (AA) it speaks of the four defenses an alcoholic uses while he/she continues to drink. In Get Your Act Together, I wrote how SHEs (Sidetracked Home Executives) use the same defenses to remain in a mess.

There is really no difference except for the outcome… drunk or disorderly.

Like an alcoholic, once a SHE stops using the four defenses, she is then able to change. Could one of these defenses be holding you back from the life you want to live?

I Hope You'll Want To Read More...

Topics: De-Cluttering, Organization, Happiness

5 Basic Needs of a Sidetracked Home Executive

Posted by Pam Young

Oct 12, 2015 6:00:00 AM

 

Wanting What Others Have Hurts You

 

“You have succeeded in life when all you really want is only what you really need.”

That quote is by Vernon Howard and he was probably never dazzled by brochures for fancy vacations or a catalogue from William Sonoma. We are continually tempted to buy what we don’t need. 

There was a recent ad on the Internet hawking the latest autumn purses (referred to as bags). It said in the email subject line: 9 Bags You Must Own This Fall. With suggestions like this, it’s no wonder we can hardly move in our closets!

  

Really the only thing we need to buy regularly is food and gas. Vernon would not be happy with some of my purchases. Like this crab hat my granddaughter Sophia is wearing. What was I thinking? I know, ‘I’ve gotta have it!’

  

Vernon’s quote resonates with SHEs (Sidetracked Home Executives) because we’ve experienced the clutter and resulting chaos that comes with not learning when enough is enough and being tempted by advertising. Yeah, we have duplicates of many items but that’s only because we lose an item and have to buy another. And yeah, we have more babies than BOs (Born Organized) because we never pay much attention to a calendar.

I Hope You'll Want To Read More...

Topics: De-Cluttering, Happiness

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