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Thread: Another 40 Hours of Decluttering Using Flylady's Timer Method: July-August 2019

  1. #11
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    Quote Originally Posted by Gardnr View Post
    ej, I have a question. Are you holding the gain from all the past 40 hour segments?

    I ask, because you've spent a ton of hours decluttering. I can't relate as I'm an organized person and our home would be empty by now. I'm trying to understand the scope of this project.
    Hi Gardnr, I would say it's a very "three steps forward, two steps backward" process. The quote from me rosa rugosa posted says it best. Unlike you, I've been pretty disorganized over my life, and when I began this project, I probably had about 30 boxes of just clutter in my house, so I have serious issues. A corner of my bedroom, the guestroom, and upstairs hallway all had huge stacks of clutter. Now the guestroom can be made for clutter-free for a guest within an hour (things sometimes still collect in there), and the upstairs hallway and my bedroom are about 90% clutter-free. I still have some boxes of clutter to go through (from "backsliding" or just ones I've never gone through) at various places in the house (maybe 5-10?), but it's all a lot better than it was before.

    Every time I do a block of 40 hours, I end up establishing some systems or places for things that prevent future clutter build up, but I still have much to do. In any case, these 40-hour blocks have made more of a difference in me finally facing these life-long issues than anything else has, and I'm so grateful to the community here for all your support with it.

  2. #12
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    Good for you, Chicken Lady, for your progress and thanks for the inspirational quote. One thing that always comes up for me when I start another 40 is a lot of shame - e.g. "Why have I let it get this bad?" "Why can't I keep my home organized like 'normal' people can?" That quote really helped me deal with that.

    Now that I've done a fair amount of decluttering in the house, I want to also count as part of these hours time spent making the house nicer. I can't quite find the right word for it - nesting? decorating? "styling?" In any case, it seems an important part of facing my issues with clutter and making my house a happy place to be.

    In that spirit, I'm going to count the 30 minutes my daughter and I spent last night spreading mulch in our front flower beds. Ever since we moved into this house 8 hours ago, the front flower beds have sort of been a mess. This past spring, I hired a landscaper to help me tear out everything that needed a lot of water (we're in LA, where we often go months without rain) and put in drought-tolerant plants. We got that done, but we never mulched. Now that we have, the front of the house looks SO much better. The drought-tolerant plants are thriving and blooming and are a big source of joy. And now we don't have to worry about weeding or watering much. Very nice.

    I find so much of the "power" of these 40-hour blocks for me is just giving myself permission to spend time making my house nicer. For some reason, that is hard for me, like it's frivolous or something, which I know is ridiculous. In any case, the 40-hour structure really helps.

    New total: 1.5.

  3. #13
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    “Home improvement.”
    nice!

    did another hour and a half.

    also had a conversation with dh about reorganizing the whole studio. Have a plan that will take well over 40 hours!

    new total, 3:15

  4. #14
    Senior Member iris lilies's Avatar
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    Last Saturday I was tired and cranky. I packed DH a picnic dinner to take to the concert in the Park. Because I was annoyed with having to put away too much crap in our kitchen that day, I packed it so everything could be tossed in the trash.

    I told him do not bring any of this stuff back home, even the plastic bag. Just put it in a trash container in the Park. So he did, and I didnt have to wash and put away food containers and eating utensils.

    I get so tired of DH coming into our house and dumping stuff on the counter for me to deal with. It is now the height of garden production and armloads of produce enter my house. He IS taking care of his huge onion crop (they are going to the refrigerator in our basement.) He has plans to can gallons of tomatoes, plus we can give some away. But I will be living Assault of the Vegetables for the next few weeks here and oh yeah, now we have double the problem because his production garden in Hermann is sizeable and is producing similar amounts. And our kitchen counter space in our 1940s kitchen there is minimal.

    First world problems, I know.

  5. #15
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    i just pulled out my old FlyLady book...I tried it when I was younger with kids, but now I am home more and retired, so it's a different set of problems. I notice she does 15 minutes at a time. Is that what you are doing? I imagine you are doing more at a time to get to 40 hours. I would like to join you and get my house to look like a home and feel good about having people over WITHOUT crisis cleaning! Are there any rules/suggestions? I know she said I need to declutter in order to follow her steps!

  6. #16
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    Quote Originally Posted by Paige View Post
    Are there any rules/suggestions? I know she said I need to declutter in order to follow her steps!
    Paige, in general everything in your home should have a place. A place close to where it is used. A place you can easily return it to.

    My rules of thumb:
    1. Laundry always goes to the hamper.
    2. Everything is in it's place when I go to bed. If it can't have a home, there is too much stuff.
    3. Dishes are done-they may be in the drying rack and I'll put them away in the morning after I make my coffee.
    4. I don't have stuff I don't use unless I just really really love it.

    Start with small bites. Choose a drawer or a cupboard and go through it. If you don't use something, put in a donate box. Put that box in your trunk. Give yourself a week to change your mind. If it's still there, take it to the thrift store and be done with it.

    Do you have a spare room you can use to stage? If yes, empty all the small stuff out of a room into that spare. i suggest starting with your bedroom. Make it a sanctuary that is restful and kind to your soul. Is there too much furniture? If yes, remove something. If no, yea you! Put back only items that are a MUST in your bedroom. For us it's our clock and a plant on my nightstand., hubby likes his jewelry box and a stuffed gorilla I gave him decades ago. There's a handmade stone dish on a table next to a lounging chair. The chair footstool is hubby's "changing table"-he wants a place to put clothes. and there is a captains' dining chair next to our Armoire. I have a plant in a ceiling hanger and there is a corner decorative paper mache "vase" with "Ting" that is super tall and gives a bit of height to the room and softens the corner.

    Some would say our room is empty.....to me it's just right. Does this give you a visual?

    For us, it was "easy". Many years ago, we decided to replace carpet in the entire house. We asked the carpet layers to divide the house in half. We unloaded half into the garage on a weekend. They laid the carpet. We "moved back in" and emptied the other half the following weekend and repeat. We made careful decisions as we moved back in. Much went to the thrift store. Only what we loved or used came back in. It was a great experience for us. All these years later, we still have empty spaces.

  7. #17
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    I think the point is just to get started and do something.

    today my something was literally five minutes.

    3:20

  8. #18
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    Gardnr, it sounds like you have really mastered this. Hats off!

    Paige, I use the timer system for these 40-hour batches in increments of 30 minutes or more. On days when I'm really trying to do a long stretch, I find I can do about 90 minutes before I need a break, and generally, I can't do more than 4-5 hours in any one day. But something about knowing I just have to "deal" for a certain amount of time really helps me get going.

    Also, somewhere, years ago I read that Baroque music is good for cleaning - I can't remember the reasoning behind it, but I often play Bach when I'm doing it - if it's a kind of decluttering that is sort of mindless, like filing papers or something like that. When I'm trying to figure out new systems for organizing things, or trying to find a "home" for certain types of items or am dealing with clutter that is emotional (heirlooms, etc.), I sometimes need to turn the music off.

    Congrats on your five minutes, Chicken Lady!

  9. #19
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    I do find it much easier since my kids are gone. Not as many people making messes.

  10. #20
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    Looks like everyone is making good progress
    Last edited by mschrisgo2; 7-30-19 at 1:34am. Reason: wrong thread

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