Are you ready to say good-bye to 2016 and make a fresh start with 2017? Let's do this! If you make resolutions, then let's also make sure you are ready for success with these top 3 ways to make your resolve stick:
A. Start small! You don't need to resolve to declutter your entire house the first week of 2017. Choose one room per month, and break down that further into parts of the room per week. It's much less overwhelming!
B. WRITE IT DOWN!!!! This creates a connection between thinking about decluttering and doing the decluttering. I like to write it down by scheduling time right into my calendar.
C. Share. Choose someone with whom to share your resolution, and your steps. It can be a friend, a partner, an anonymous online group....whatever works for you. Basically you are looking for someone to help hold you accountable!
Need a little help getting started decluttering? Try the new We Love Messes Strategy Sessions - you can shop for these right at our website!
I'm sure you're probably busy with last minute holiday plans. Wrapping, travelling, cooking, and in general trying to squeeze in a week of activities into two days. But I'm going to ask you to take just a few minutes to plan for after the holidays - when there are those bowls and plates of leftovers.
Ever hosted a gathering (of any type) where there aren't leftovers? Not me - even with careful planning. What happens to the extra food? Is it dismissed to the back of the fridge not to see daylight until it's too late? Did you know 40% of the food produced in the United States goes uneaten? We can be better stewards of our edible resources than that!
Recently Minnesota Public Radio hosted an engaging conversation on ways to reduce food waste during the holiday season with Eureka Recycling in the Twin Cities. I loved their idea of using glass jars to send leftovers home with guests. Heck, I like the idea of sending home leftovers, period! Being able to warm up some supper on a busy night doesn't just fill our stomachs, it fills our hearts with the memories of the gathering, AND saves us time! Win. Win. Win.
Enjoy the food - both eating and sharing. We are so lucky to have excess - there are many who don't.
What's your favorite way to use up party leftovers? Inquiring minds want to know.....
Give the gift of calm and peace this holiday season! Be sure to check out the virtual packages I have ready, including the Peace of Mind Package, which includes:
This is too good not to share again! One of my very creative fellow Professional Organizer's shares her take on a holiday classic:
'Twas just weeks before Christmas, when I looked 'round my house
And feelings were stirring that I couldn't douse.
The clutter was piled up in mounds all around,
And piles, dust and overwhelm all did abound.
No visions of sugarplums danced in my head,
Just feelings of angst and confusion and dread.
The papers were piled on the table so high
There's no chance of mealtime, I thought with a sigh.
I thought of the guests that would come all too soon
And started to panic and wish it was June.
Aackk! People are coming! Oh, where will they stay?
I must move this clutter. It's all in the way.
I want to have family and friends to enjoy,
To entertain, decorate, bake and ah, oh boy.
"I meant to get to it", I heard myself whine,
But now it's December and I'm down to the line.
I thought I could do it myself if I tried,
But it was too much and my brain felt so fried.
I needed some help and I knew whom to call
A Professional Organizer who's on the ball.
My organizer friend was so lively and quick
Before I knew it I was ready for St. Nick!
She helped me to think in a rational way.
I still had some time; they're not coming today.
She settled me down and said, "You'll be alright.
Now take a deep breath and this clutter we'll fight.
We'll start in one room and just put things away
Stuff with no 'home' won't be able to stay."
We cleared and we sorted, we put things away
I was so glad I had not waited just one more day!
We purged and we sorted and made such a clatter
The donation bags just got fatter and fatter."
Soon tabletops showed up and floors all got cleared
There's so much more room now, it almost feels weird.
With Karen's help I got so much more done,
She's taught me the process, we even had fun.
I love it! I said as I looked all around.
I couldn't believe all the lost stuff I'd found!
I'd managed quite well while the stuff was all lost
But realized I'd be fine if most just got tossed.
I could go on but I think I'll stop here
And wish every one of you holiday cheer.
Oh, and by the way, if your shopping's not done-
If you choose gifts that they'll want, need or use up, you've all won!
Karen here now, all done butchering this poem,
Wishing each of you joy and peace inside of your home.
And so I'll exclaim as I send my newsletter Merry Christmas to all! Be a clutter go-getter!
© 2014 Karen Sheesley
It is impossible to make a decision about an item if we don't know how many or what kind we have. Sorting is an essential first step to a sustainable, organized space. Ever bought something only to realize that you already own it? Happens all the time.
To know what we own, we have to sort into like groups in one spot to give us visual representation. I once worked with a family that didn't have closets in the bedrooms (old house built when storage wasn't really a necessity!), so clothes were all over the house. We talked about quantity, and Mom guesstimated that her daughter had about 25 sweatshirts. When we got them all together there were over 70. Mom was a bit surprised. Actually, I was too!
Let's use a pantry for example. Pull out all the canned goods, stacking each type of food in a separate spot. Baking supplies go in another area, pots, pans, lids in another. You get the idea. I like to wipe down the shelves as I go - or get the kids in the house to help out - let's make this a 2 for 1 deal!
What space in your house needs a good sorting? We all have them! So let's get started - especially before any gifts come wandering through the door!
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Tammy Schotzko is a Certified Professional Organizer who