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Thread: Setting A Decluttering Goal in Units of Time Using Flylady's Timer Method - July 2018

  1. #11
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    IL, you think like me). Always much easier when the pack rat is gone.

  2. #12
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    I had hoped to do four hours today - because my daughter is with her dad and I am having people over Monday night - but I didn't quite manage it.

    But I did do two hours. These were technically hours 3 and 4, but they really felt like the first two "real" hours because before them, I was mostly doing unpacking and light puttering.

    Since I am having guests over on Monday night (always a big motivator for me), I'm focusing this weekend on the first floor common areas - the living room and dining room. Because my daughter is 7 and our house is small, most of her toys and play areas are on the first floor.

    I concentrated today on her art corner which has gotten messy. It was hard. I had to keep telling myself not to be a perfectionist and to just think of what I was doing was a "pass-through" cleaning, and in truth, there were a lot of things that were easy to throw out: probably 10 magic markers that had dried out, lots of old drawings and art projects. There was definitely more I could have tossed (old sticker books and coloring books that weren't completely used up, but almost), but in any case, that particular area, which is the first thing guests see when they come in the front door, looks better. I still have about 30 more minutes to do on it tomorrow though to really finish. Also, I was trying to create a kind of pretty "vignette" of her art projects on the top of the bookcase that holds all her supplies, and it's not quite right yet. I know I just have to be patient, though, and in time, I'll find a combination of pictures and objects that "spark joy."

    I was having trouble getting motivated earlier, but one thing I did that helped was to go back and look at my posts from other times when I've set goals for hours of decluttering. I've been setting these goals at regular intervals for three years now! Even though there is still a lot of clutter in my house, looking back made it really clear that though it has been a three-steps-forward-two-steps-backwards process, the progress has been definite and steady. When I started three years ago, the guest room and upstairs hall were full of clutter. This year, I completely decluttered the guest room (though I have some boxes of my winter clothes in there right now which I need to move) and the hallway is about 75% less cluttered. And through it all, the support of those of you here who have chimed in has been incredibly helpful, so thanks.

    As always at this stage, I'm dealing with a lot of guilt and shame about having all this clutter in the first place and anxiety about the best way to do this or that, but I've learned those feelings are just an inherent part of the process for me

    New total: 4 hours.

  3. #13
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    Evhase, you’re in the child rearing years with working and those are messy years for sure. Many on this forum are retired so of course our homes are neater, etc. By age 7 my kids had to play in their room including art but I had 3 so they weren’t lonely up there. I also went up a lot to play with them. We would often all read downstairs in the evening, homework was done down there until the kids were older. So it was easier to keep the downstairs neater. Also the more people the more stuff. Other things take preference over clutter. We would just put things in the basement to deal with later. Later came when we moved across the country for a job with 5 of us.
    This forum is filled with people that have plenty of time for decluttering. Do what you can and enjoy your child. The years go fast. I also thought it was more important to play with my kids and do things with them then clean. I tried to keep my living room neat so if someone dropped over they came in the front door and we sat there)

  4. #14
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    Thanks for the encouragement, Teacher Terry. I definitely prioritize quality time with my daughter over cleaning and decluttering, but I know both she and I are both happier and more relaxed in a reasonably orderly home. Like me, my mom was a single mom, and I'm realizing now that she did a lot of decluttering when I was off with my dad, which is what I tend to do with my daughter. But I think I also want to include my daughter more in some of the decluttering and cleaning so that she develops some of the good habits I never did. I'd love it if she and I could develop some housekeeping routines together so that she could get some positive messages about how satisfying such routines can be. We started using charts this year for morning routines, and I think I'm going to expand that a little this summer to include evening routines too. We'll see.

    Also like me, my mom had pretty serious clutter issues, and cleaning out her house with my siblings after she died made me realize how much all that clutter stressed her out. I think figuring out good routines and strategies for maintaining a reasonably tidy home (believe me, my standards are not super-high!) improve my quality of life. I'd like to feel nurtured by my home instead of stressed out by it, and I *do* feel nurtured by it when I take care of it.

    Onward!

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