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- wendell berry

catch on fire

that you will be relieved to see your house

clutter

don't own so much

- guilty clutter

- guilty clutter

onsenting

c

- compulsive (or impulsive) shopping

- compulsive (or impulsive)
   shopping

uying

b

- things like every day items and gifts

- things like every day
   items and gifts

cquiring 

A

well let's have a little chat about clutter.

before we can talk about how to get rid of it, let's talk about why we have so much of it in the first place! 

I call it the ABCs of clutter:

got clutter?

acquiring things isn't the same as buying things (omg, how confusing!) - in this case, it just means the things that come into our homes on a daily basis.  things like make-up and conditioner, cat food and gerbil treats, take-out menus and ketchup packets, birthday gifts and Hannukah dreidels.  all that stuff takes up space in your home, and can easily become....well, clutter.  

once a month, do a 21-item purge.  this will help ensure that you maintain a relatively stable level of stuff.  i am also a hug fan of the one-in-one-out rule.  this is particularly useful if you, like me, tend to have several sets of measuring cups and hair products.

The cause - acquiring

acquiring solution

once a month, do a 21-item purge.  this will help ensure that you maintain a relatively stable level of stuff.  i am also a hug fan of the one-in-one-out rule.  this is particularly useful if you, like me, tend to have several sets of measuring cups and hair products.

The cause - acquiring

buying things is my main problem.  i love to shop.  i love new tupperware containers and planners (yes, i need all five of them) and pajamas and coffee mugs.  and it's very rarely (ok, never) well thought out.  it's impulsive.  but it's not our fault, right?  we're bombarded everywhere - tv, youtube, instagram, facebook - with ads for cute and cheap clothes and cute garden gnomes and amazing kitchen gadgets, that really do nothing to make our lives better.

buying solution

before you purchase anything - online or in the store - take a second and ask yourself these two questions:

The cause - buying

do i really need this?
where am i going to put it?

you can even download the little card i've made and tape it to your debit card.  it's a fun little conversation starter in the check-out line as you leave.  if you're really good at self-discipline, you can always put a 24-hour hold on any purchase.  generally on the few occasions where i've decided to wait 24 hours, i generally find that i really don't even want the item any more.  oh yeah, and don't store your card number on the computer.  make yourself get up and get the card!


if you're an empty nester, chances are you have consent clutter - that's the detritus that your little birdies have left behind when they've flown off to live their own lives.  we 'consent' to let them leave the stuff they don't know what to do with, and we feel guilty getting rid of it.  another kind of consent (guilt) clutter is holding on to sentimental items because 'it was great-aunt maud's brass flatware set she got in egypt on her honeymoon.'  you've never met great-aunt maud, and you don't like brass flatware, and yet there it is.  taking up precious space in your dining room.

consent solution

this is so hard for people pleasers like me, but the truth is that if you don't put boundaries around your life, who will?  if you don't like brass flatware from egypt, you aren't required to hang on to that set just because it belonged to a family member.  ask other family members if they want it, and if they don't, then bless someone who loves brass flatware from egypt.  and if your children haven't come to pick up the baton trophy from 1975 by now, they're never coming for it.  take it to the curb.  remember these words:  only keep what you use and love.

The cause - consent

dying to know more about clutter?  i've got a whole page of resources for you!

i'm dying to know more about clutter!