Do you have more possessions than you can comfortably handle? Do you avoid inviting people into your home because of the clutter? Do you argue with loved ones about your clutter? Are cleaning, organizing, follow through, upkeep and maintenance difficult because of clutter? Do you find yourself purchasing items you know you already have, but can’t locate when you need them? Does clutter keep you from enjoying quality leisure time? If you answered “Yes”, to any of these questions, you’re not alone in suffering from the negative effects of clutter.
There are many definitions of clutter: postponed decision making, items you do not use or love, too many items in too small a space. Just google it and you’ll see what I mean but, whatever your definition is, clutter is now so commonplace that, sadly, it seems to be the norm in many homes today.
NOTE: If an item is useful (and you actually use it!) or is inspiring to you, it isn’t clutter. HOWEVER, if that item does not have a place to live when not in use – then it can easily become clutter. The problem isn’t with the item; the problem is with the lack of a storage solution for the item.
For good or for bad, we live in a consumer society with advertising EVERYWHERE that encourages people to have unrealistic expectations about what they need. Buy more; buy bigger; buy newer. Buy, buy, buy. Advertisers have been promoting mindless consumption for so long that – like clutter – people’s addiction to acquiring and owning has now become the norm.
So, what can you do to live a more clutter-free life? First of all, you need to cultivate a healthy skepticism about commercial messages and what they’re trying to sell you. Secondly, you have to have a more conscious approach to shopping and buy only what you really need, have a place for and will use. Unfortunately, too many people can not distinguish between what they NEED and what they WANT – two VERY different things. The key is to recognize when you have enough and that you don’t always need more and not allow yourself to be caught up in acquiring.
It won’t be easy to wean yourself off of the getting and the having habit. It won’t happen over night and it will ONLY happen if you allow yourself to become aware and avoid acquiring unnecessary items in the first place. It will take time, but it is the only sane alternative to cluttering up your homes.