Living simply, minimalism, downsizing, tiny homes, life balance, these are all terms you hear a lot about on social media, TV shows, podcasts or streaming sites lately. As a Professional Organizer I get a lot of potential clients contacting me to say they would like me to help them to achieve a way of living simply and with less clutter in their lives.
Some are moving into smaller homes and just don’t know how to decide on what to keep but want to learn to live with less.
So what does that really look like? As you can imagine peoples interpretation of these descriptions are very different and I have to take in a lot of factors before I can create a plan that will work for them.
If you are ready to make a change to simplify your life here are a few suggestions that you may want to take time to think about:
1) How much stuff do you have? Overwhelmed with clutter is one of the most common reasons for people to call me for help. The most challenging thing for them may not only be theirs but the family members’ clutter. The easiest way is to get the family involved, giving each member their own responsibilities. If they are not on board at the beginning don’t get discouraged, move forward, and deal with your space and your things. I suggest to my clients that they sort items according to family members, and assign a deadline that they have to go through their items to make decisions. Most do see the benefits when the process is started. So just start!
2) Be more in the moment. Hard to do, I know. We have so many things vying for our attention so what does that look like. An example would be go for a walk or run and don’t use your head phones. Enjoy and look at your environment in the moment. When starting a session with a client I find that they seem to focus on what is not working in their space and what is bothering them. This, of course, is why I am there but I like to start by asking them, “What is working in the space?”, then I work our plan around that. It is important to have a plan and break it into steps so you keep what is important to you intact and adjust the rest of the plan accordingly.
3) Information overload. These days with TV and the internet we have so much information about everything you could want, it can be very intimidating. Social media can make us feel bad about ourselves because we compare everything to others, TV shows make everything seem like it can be fixed in an hour or a weekend. There are so many “solutions” to problems on google or being told to us by friends, how do we know what to trust? I find comparing with others leaves people stuck and hard to move forward. Find solutions that work for you and your family, stick to it and don’t compare yourself with others. Everyone’s lives are different and what works for one person may not work for another. Focusing on what other people present takes you away from enjoying what’s in front of you and can stop you from moving towards you’re goal.
4) Are you a Do-it Yourselfer? If so, make sure you ask for help if you need it. Getting discouraged creates procrastination which delays you from getting to your goals. If you do reach out for help a few things to think of; make sure it is from someone you trust, you can be honest with and who is not judgmental. Being judged creates discouragement and procrastination.
If you don’t have a support team search for the proper professional. If decluttering and feeling overwhelmed dealing with too much stuff then a Professional Organizers is where you should look. If it is life circumstances that are holding you back or getting you overwhelmed, you may need a health professional or maybe a life or business coach that can get you going in the right direction.
5) Baby steps. I know you may have heard this before, a lot, but that is because it is very important. Change one thing, clean one area, and make one decision at a time. Sometimes we do not realise there is a problem until it has gotten to be too much to handle. By breaking things down into smaller jobs you can then become to view it as doable chores instead of one giant problem. Change can be difficult and there are some things we can’t change (Family dynamics, living and storage space, finances). But by recognizing and accomplishing smaller tasks it not only helps us get closer to our goal but gives us peace of mind and confidence that it can be done.
So whether it is downsizing your stuff or your home, dealing with health and wellness, remember it is your life so simplifying what is best for you will make the most impact.
At Chaos to Clarity we help our clients with individual organizing needs; Downsizing, decluttering, office organizing, estate clear-outs and move management in the Halton, Hamilton, Peel, West GTA and surrounding areas. Would be glad to answer any questions.
Are you a do-it-yourself person but just looking for some tips and encouragement? I have created an organizing course just for you!