I'm not naturally inclined to propagate these kind of challenges as I feel they often seem to address secondary issues with the activity involved in the challenge. In this case, however, I believe that the activity itself is the challenge we normally face, and that makes it a slightly different type of challenge. Besides: THIS one is right up my alley!
You all understand by now that decluttering is more than just letting go of the sentimental or less loved, or dumping rubbish when necessary, but it involves a certain level of structure to help things along and ensure that you reach whichever goal you set for a particular session. Having a system that you set up ahead of time, write down on a list and intend to follow is certainly a good incentive to keep going and be more successful in this endeavour.
Her system is simple, really: make a list of 40 areas you are going to address one at a time, take care of that area and write down your progress next to the item. Ingenious! Not only will you assign the areas ahead of time – which means you won’t be stumped for a place to start and are blocked for choice – but you follow the progress as it happens. Seeing the list fill up with successes is the best way to go forward and tackle the next item.
You may be wondering now: “40 areas in my house? I don’t have that much stuff!” and my answer would be “You’d be surprised!”
You may simply be thinking too big from the start: the whole thing is not meant to make you work for hours each day! As an example, you may be thinking of an area like “kitchen”, but that does not have to be true. Think of areas like “kitchen drawers”, or “kitchen: hanging cupboards” and you’ll find that not only these are far more achievable, but they are also far less daunting. And yet you’ll be amazed by the sheer amount of things you can do without.
40 bags does not necessarily mean filling one bag each day either: decluttering comes in many shapes and sizes, and Ann Marie brings mentioned “non-stuff” things like decluttering your computer files, setting up cleaning schedules, email filing, laundry lists, finances, etc. – all these can be an item on you list. And once more: “computer files” may be too wide a category and can be separated out into “picture files”, “documents”, “presentations”, etc. – enough to fill a 40 day plan, for sure.
If you are wondering how to get started, why not visit the 40 bags in 40 days page and find the downloadable list and two lists of options to fill it with. Good luck.
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Ideas to help clear away the mess in our homes and in our minds.
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Hi, my name is Tilo Flache. My current mission: help my clients declutter mind and space.
This blog contains pointers for your journey towards a happier living experience.