40 & 41 = tackling clutter

Challenge 40:

Declutter before organizing. Many people make the mistake of taking a cluttered desk or filing cabinet or closet or drawer, and trying to organize it. Unfortunately, that’s not only hard to do, it keeps things complicated. Simplify the process by getting rid of as much of the junk as possible, and then organizing. If you declutter enough, you won’t need to organize at all.

I was recently working on sorting through a stack of old papers and I caught myself trying to organize the dang thing before I did anything with it. Sheesh! I got so frustrated then remembered the tips Leo had on clearing the desk and so I started right at the top of the pile and worked through it straight to the bottom. *breathe* That felt wonderful. Let’s do it again!

Challenge 41:

Have a place for everything. Age-old advice, but it’s the best advice on keeping things organized. After you declutter.

This is an area that I struggle with on a regular basis. Big breakthroughs for me have been:

  • designating one knitting basket for the living room, everything else in plastic bins under the guestroom bed.
  • a bread tray in the kitchen where all of the breads (including tortillas) live.
  • a canning tray in the kitchen – polish off a jar of jam? wash it and put it in the basket. sanitized too many jars for this batch? put ’em in the basket.
  • toiletries bin in the closet – where we keep all of our sample and mini sized items ready to be tossed into a toiletries bag for the gym or travel.

What clutter-busting tactics have worked for you?

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