For me, there are two reasons that I have “clutter” around me:
- It is too hard to put it away, or
- I am in a hurry.
If the first issue is solved, it minimizes the chances that I can use the second one as my excuse.
It comes down to old adage (you probably heard your mother or grandmother say): “A place for everything and everything in its place.” That works well when we first get organized, because we know where every item should go.
But if everything originally had a location and that location is too difficult to get to, or requires more than one step (especially with your hands full), then it is easier to throw it in a corner, put it on the table, or hang it on a chair – and do it later. However I know that “later” usually comes at the stage when the “clutter” has finally gotten to me.
My second reason of being in a hurry has the same result – as I don’t think have enough time to put it away, before I have to be somewhere, or do something more important. That is because it isn’t easy. So again, if the item’s real location is effortless to get to, then it is just as easy to put it away “now” as it is to add it to the pile of “do it later” items when I am in a hurry.
Therefore, I find the easiest way to avoid clutter is to make putting things away “dead-simple”. In the end it saves me a whole lot of time.
Another tip, is to label those locations so that you and everybody in the household knows “where” the items belong. Others cannot use excuses like “I wasn’t sure where you wanted this”.
An easily-accessed place for everything is important all year round, but it is very important during the holidays, when reason #2 seems to be the theme of the day.
Do you have a tendency to pile things up to be done later? What are your tips for minimizing the clutter?