“Where do I start?
My life is so disorganized!”
Start with just five minutes a day.
“But I can’t accomplish anything in just five minutes!”
Five minutes a day is more than nothing, it’s a containable time period, and by the end of one week – you’ll have dedicated more than 35 minutes to your de-cluttering goal. Here are some road rules to follow, five minutes at a time.
Today’s 5 Minute Fix: STOP Impulsive Buying…Create a 30-day Purchase List
Come on! You HAD to know this was coming… The problem with de-cluttering is that we can de-clutter to our heart’s content, but without managing the influx of new stuff, the clutter monster rears its ugly head over and over.
It is a simple equation:
More Stuff = More Clutter
In order to fight that over-buying, ‘back-sliding’ tendency, nip clutter in the bud and avoid buying stuff in the first place. This is sometimes easier said, than done.
Here are some helpful hints on How to Stop Buying:
- Begin by setting a spending budget for the next month.
- Take out cash for the items you know you’ll need to pay for.
- Create a purchase list: every time you want to buy something that’s not absolutely necessary add it to this list, along with the date the idea occurred. (Simply writing down what you want to buy, forces you to wait before you buy it)
- For one month, do not buy anything (except necessities) unless the item has been on the list for 30 days. Review your list at the end of 30 days and identify how many items were Needs vs. Wants.
- Adjust your next month’s budgeting/purchasing accordingly.
What you may find is that you’ve lost the urge to buy items by building in this simple planning and tracking step. It will also force you to be aware of how often you tend to impulsively buy items.
A deeper reflection may reveal what is behind your buying. The cold hard truth is that people buy for many subliminal reasons. They may be bored and simply want something to do, shopping may offer a feeling of power for those who feel powerless, others may buy for “someone else” in order to feel good and/or replace what may be missing in their relationships. Whatever the reasons for you, unleashing them and giving them voice and reflection, may help you save a lot of money and avoid future clutter.
If you need help decluttering – consider downloading one of the following to help you:
- “Time To Toss It” gives you all the guidelines you need for over-due items. You’ll finally have guidelines for how long to keep items on everything from kitchen items, to beauty supplies, to important papers.
- My “Dimensions Workbook” was created as a self-guided workbook to walk you through the organizing process, step-by-step. It’s like hiring a Professional Organizer to guide you through de-cluttering your most frustrating areas. This workbook also contains supplies and tools checklists to help you be successful!