Do you get distracted easily? Find yourself working on several different organizational/decluttering projects at one time? Does this overwhelm you? As a project manager it is my nature to troubleshoot the schedule and work in a parallel universe. If I hit one roadblock here I just move on down the schedule and work on things I can work on at the time. When I am able to work on item #1 again, I do. This keeps me from losing too much working time waiting. The problem is that I am trained to do this, but most people aren’t. Do you get seventy-five to eighty percent complete with a project and have a hard time completing that last twenty to twenty-five percent? It’s ok to admit it, if you do.
The reason this is important for you to recognize is because in essence those five projects with remaining twenty-five percents contributes to your clutter, especially if you don’t have a system. How many of those projects are taking up space in your home? Do you have a “project” area – a specific place to put your projects until they are done? Yeah, kind of hard when it is your dresser or your pantry or laundry room space.
Picture this…you start working early on a Saturday morning on your pantry with the intentions of cleaning, decluttering and organizing it. You look up at one point and realize you have food items all over the kitchen and you are late for the outing with your mother-in-law. (Insert your project and a distraction here). Well what do you do? Some would shove everything back in the pantry…others would live with the kitchen in disarray for days until they make it back to working on the pantry.
To avoid this type of scenario it is important for you to think about your project in phases before you start. If it is a project that you anticipate will take a number of days determine what you want to complete on the first day/time allotment and shoot to reach that goal. Another key is to make sure you obtain all your supplies before you begin. There is nothing like getting deep in a project and realizing you forgot to get shelf liner or the drill has to be charged. At the end of that day/time allotment pack up your items or move them to the side and determine when you are going to come back to tackle it again.
When we work with Clients a lot of times the process takes many days and depending on our Client’s schedule we may have days or weeks between sessions. We would never leave a Client’s home in disarray for this amount of time. So we have to get them to a good stopping point so they can function until we are able to complete the job.
THB Quick Tip: Paper boxes are free and great organizational resources that you can use to help sort and/or maintain your project(s). I regularly use these as temporary storage/sorting mechanisms. The beauty of using these is that you can get them from just about any business for free (minus the reams of paper of course). You can fill them with your project specific items and put the lid on. They are also stackable so they take up little real estate in your space.
We hope this is helpful as you embark on your decluttering journey!