This is how to keep on top of your life
Magazines devote entire issues to achieving the annual resolution many of us make and break before Dr. King’s birthday, that of organizing and decluttering our spaces.
Studies have shown that clutter contributes to stress, and everyone knows how stress can affect the quality of life. Americans, particularly, have grown accustomed to larger personal spaces. With that comes the need, preached by society and the media, to fill those spaces up. But as the amount of stuff increases, so does stress.
For some, the allure of stuff can become overwhelming, and one just doesn’t know where to start. So here are a few painless and even fun ways to rid yourself of clutter and begin Spring with a clear conscience.
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Activities to De-clutter Your Space and Life
Organize a “stuff swap.” Invite your friends and neighbors to bring items they no longer want to swap for things they do want. Display items in groups and ask each participant to provide a brief comment about the item, preferably something catchy. Provide finger foods and a festive atmosphere. Kids love this, too, and it’s a great way to teach them about reuse.
Spend 15 minutes a day doing a declutter exercise. This could be a drawer, shelf, or tote. Organize items into four groups: trash, donations, and keeping. The fourth group is the “unsure” items.
Put the “unsure” items away for now and concentrate on the first three groups. When considering the donation group, think outside the box. Animal clinics and shelters can use towels and sheets; women’s shelters can use just about anything. And be sure to check local recycling/reuse opportunities in your community.
Think before you spend. Resolve to make conscious decisions about your purchases. Impulse shopping is the biggest culprit to clutter. Is it possible to borrow an item you will only need occasionally? Does the item have to be purchased new? Can you repurpose something you already own to meet the need?
One good exercise is to wait at least 48 hours before making a purchase. The old adage to “sleep on it” will likely help you decide if you really want the item. If you still do, then go for it. But it’s amazing how many times the desire will be gone!
Finally, think locally. By limiting purchases, the low-price allure of big-box retail will be dulled. In addition to putting money into the pockets of our friends and neighbors, shopping locally helps the planet. Have you ever thought about the £5 watch purchased from a big-box retailer and how much it cost (in terms of environmental impact) to end up on the shelf?
Organise Your Life
Break the habits of bad organizational skills. Your office and home are in terrible conditions, and you don’t know where to start! Get your life back on track with these three tips to help improve your organizational skills throughout your home, office, and life.
The first thing you should write on that list is to get organized! A to-do list is very useful and convenient. No more forgetting what you need to do, what you have to buy, and no more rescheduling those missed doctor appointments. A to-do list is there to help you get ahead.
You can purchase a calendar that hangs on the refrigerator and fill in your appointments and meetings. You can also have a daily to-do list where you sit down during your morning breakfast and write down all the things you wish to complete before the time you go to bed at night.
If you have a cell phone that allows you to input data and lets you know when the time for a certain event to take place has arrived, that works too. All of these things will help you to be more organized overall.
There’s A Place For Everything
Tired of walking into a cluttered house or stepping into your paper-filled office? Well, then the time to get things in order is way overdue! There needs to be a place for everything, no more looking all over your house for yesterday’s mail! If you have children who leave their toys everywhere, get them a toy bin and place it in their closet or under their bed.
Invest in some durable plastic bins of all sizes for the things in your home without a place (mail, bills, books, clothes). Now place those bins in a certain place, such as the bin with your summer clothes goes in the attic until summer, then switch the clothes out.
Put the bin for your mail somewhere near the front door; there is no reason to have mail piled up on your kitchen table! Get some file separators for your office work and an office bag big enough to carry your papers in. In the long run, this is a huge time saver for you and your family.
The feeling of having no time to get things done is a terrible one. That is where time management comes into play. You need to sit down and write for this one. Grab a piece of paper and separate the days of the week out to where you have seven slots.
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Start by filling in the required things you have to do, such as what time you have to be at work or the doctor’s office. Now you need to figure out how many hours a day are going to the other things you need to do.
Say, for instance, you work from 9-5, decide to spend two hours with your kids when they come home from school, eat dinner, and study for an hour before bed. It is up to you to decide how you spend your day.
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