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Thread: Setting a Decluttering Goal in Units of Time Using Flylady's Timer Method - July 2017

  1. #61
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    ejchase, do you find that you are sifting through things multiple times or are you able to just pick up each item and make a permanent decision? Are you being thwarted by a lack of places to put things?

    when I started cleaning out, for a long time I kept starting at the outter surface and trying to work inward. I discovered that I made better, more lasting progress if I picked a spot and "excavated down to the bedrock" so to speak before putting that spot in order.

    so, for example, I notice that I have a lot of books everywhere. Books are important to me. I decide where I most want to have books. I clear a path to that shelf and remove every item from it (temporarily making the mess worse), dust the shelf, and fill it with my favorite books. (Hopefully finding a few books and other items I can give up along the way). Now, I have one shelf that is perfect. Move on to next space/category.

    clothes one never wears end up at the back of the closet, or buried in drawers. If you empty those spaces and put your favorite things in first, you quickly realize how you feel about the things that are preventing you from reaching them. When the thing you like that has been sitting in a spot forever loses it's spot to something you love and you realize you have moved the thing you like out of your way 73 times, you realize "I like this, but not enough to make space for it, so it needs to go."

    also, pay attention to what you are bringing in. Try to bring in as little as possible. If things are steadily going out and you are not bringing new things in, progress is happening even if you don't see it.

  2. #62
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    Oh, my plant society's stuff: I kept a box of 200+ award ribbons (blue, red, yellow, white) as well as about a dozen rosettes, all imprinted with the name of mynplant society. No other organizations would take them due to the imprinting.

    We have a vague idea that we may have a small fair at the community garden ad perhaps we will need those for prizes.But I won tkeep them forever.

  3. #63
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    Thanks, Chicken Lady, for your suggestions.

    I am sifting through things multiple times, simply in order to build momentum. Because this is such emotionally difficult work for me, my mantra at this stage is "Do what's easy." And what's been easy so far is just going through everything and weeding out the obvious trash and stuff to give away. In some ways, I think Kondo advocates this approach when she talks about discarding first and about starting with clothes and working up to harder things like mementos. So I've spent the first 24 hours mostly just on discarding, and I still have more of that to do. But I think today, since I've been feeling so overwhelmed and discouraged, that I need to focus on doing some things that will help me see some progress. So I'll spend an hour putting away what's remaining in my bedroom so that I can make that room nice. And if there is stuff there I can't deal with (e.g. make decisions about), I'll just throw that stuff in a box and put it in the hallway with the other boxes. I've learned from past experience that once I start to see some progress, I feel stronger and am more able to tackle the harder stuff.

    I'm also going to make trips to the P.O. and Goodwill today. I have a bunch of things to mail to friends and family and clothes to return, so that will clear a little more out. And I have about 30 items to drop off at Goodwill. Getting that stuff out the door will be encouraging too.

    I think I'm about 10 hours away from being able to take on putting all my clothes on the floor and touching each piece once. But I am actually looking forward to that part. And I'm looking forward to doing books too, though I'm not going to follow Kondo's method exactly there. I have way too many books to put them all on the floor, but I'm thinking if I go bookcase by bookcase and just touch every book, I'll find plenty to give away. I *have* to be realistic about what I can reasonably take on, and that's seems like a more reasonable approach to me - I have easily over 500 books!

    Also, I'm going out of town again tomorrow for 48 hours, then have my daughter for the weekend, then am out of town for another four days, so it may be a couple of weeks before I can make another sustained push. But I'm feeling more hopeful this morning.
    Last edited by ejchase; 8-8-17 at 4:00pm.

  4. #64
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    Lol! I have over 500 books just in my living room. I have 50 that I pulled out to use in a class I'm teaching this year. I was proud of myself for discarding 3 related to the class that I decided I would never use. Maybe I'm not going to be much help.

  5. #65
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    Ha, ha CL.

  6. #66
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    Well, I did make some good progress today. I decided to just focus on the side of the bedroom where there had been a lot of piles of clutter on some low bookcases and on the floor. That part of the room is the first thing I see when I wake in the morning, and I decided it would be a nice little gift to myself to just prioritize getting it clear. I'd say that between yesterday and today, I dealt with 80% of what was there - recycled a lot of old newspapers and junk mail and other paper, put away a lot of stuff, gave stuff to Goodwill. Then I put the remaining 20% in a box and stuck it in the hallway with the other boxes I'm going to be dealing with next and vacuumed and dustbusted and tidied the rest of the room. I really needed one clear space. And it's interesting to me that, often, my bedroom is the last place I take care of. I always take care of the downstairs because that's what guests see. So doing this today was sort of a good message to myself that it's okay to clean a space just for myself to enjoy and feel relaxed in.

    I also took 30 things to Goodwill and mailed off a bunch of items - clothes that needed to be returned and gifts I'd bought for friends and family that had been sitting on my desk.

    Tomorrow I will only have about an hour to straighten up the whole house a bit before I go out of town, then return with my daughter for three days.

    I'm feeling much better today.

    The straight decluttering was 1.5 hours. The trip to Goodwill and the mailing off all that stuff took about 3 hours, but I'm going to just count it as 1 since a lot of it was driving time and doing things like addressing envelopes.

    New total: 26.5.

  7. #67
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    I did one more hour before I left town yesterday. New total: 27.5.

    Now I won't really be able to get back to it until around August 18th.

  8. #68
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    You made a lot of progress! Enjoy your daughter!

  9. #69
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    I count any progress as progress!! I have a donation pick up this morning but not nearly as much in the box as I would have liked. Oh, well. Next time. Congrats on your progress; slow and steady wins the race!
    To the world you may be one person, but to one person you may be the world. - Anon.

    Be nice whenever possible. It's always possible. - Dalai Lama

  10. #70
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    Thanks, All.

    When I freeze up, my motto has been, "Any step forward is a step forward."

    I got back from being out of town again on Thursday night, and yesterday, I put in an hour. New total: 28.5.

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