Just how much time do you lose everyday looking for things? Do you or your spouse, if you are married, have stacks of stuff everywhere? Are you holding onto things from your childhood or teen years? Do you save everything and never get rid of anything?
Would you feel comfortable if unexpected guests would stop by for a surprise visit? Or, do you need two weeks' notice just to find the house?
What about your garage? Are you storing everything in there except your most valuable possession, the car? What does your purse look like? How long does it take to find your keys? Do you have room on the desk to pay bills?
A recent survey indicates that the average person spends 1.5 hours daily at work or home looking for things. That means, on average, you trade 546 hours per year of your life just trying to find the things you need and want. And, most of the time the "stuff" you are looking for is buried under piles and stacks of clutter.
Un-clutter to save time
If you are constantly looking for things, now is the time to do something about it. Decide right now not to exchange one more minute of your life looking for things. Sort it, file it, organize it, put it away or get rid of it.
I recently visited a home show and saw lots of great systems to organize garage, clothes closets and storage areas. If you are not sure what to do, check out a local home show or look at magazines and model homes to get additional ideas.
The rule of thumb for removing clutter from a closet is: "If it doesn't fit, look great on or you do not feel like a million dollars wearing it, get rid of it."
If clutter is in the kitchen or garage, a similar rule applies. "If it's chipped, cracked, broken, a duplicate or you have not used it for two years, get rid of it."
Be merciless and dump those stacks of magazines, old photographs you never look at or hand-me-downs that no longer have meaning. There are numerous charities and churches that would gratefully welcome your contribution.
You will save lots of time to do more important and enjoyable things. At 546 hours -per-year, you will save 13 or more 40-hourwork -weeks.. The old adage "time is money" really applies here.
Un-clutter to improve well being
When you are constantly looking for something, stress sets in, along with anxiety the longer you have to continue the search. Un-cluttering removes stress, which leads to a calmer atmosphere in your home and surroundings. When personal home and workplace environment are calmer, personal well-being improves.
Watching the 6 p.m. news filled with local and global events is stressful enough. Being surrounded with lots of clutter amplifies those outside events, creating a snowball effect on stress levels.
Un-clutter to improve relationships
Spending lots of time looking for lost things because of clutter means less time to spend with family and friends. Once un-cluttered, your time will be freed up to spend with others. And, you will enjoy it more when you're no longer worrying about stacks of stuff or finding glasses, keys, important legal papers or whatever is missing.
Relationships will improve because friends and family members will notice how calm your home is and how calm you've become. They will want to spend more time with you because they are enjoying the relationship more. They will want to linger over a glass of wine, a cup of coffee or tea, because you are relaxed and enjoying the moment.
Controlling clutter leads to a calmer more peaceful home and workspace. It saves time and leads to more productivity, efficiency and focus on matters at hand. And you create a sanctuary for rest, relaxation and retreat from the outside world.
Pat Heydlauff is a feng shui consultant, public speaker, columnist and artist. For feng shui consultations and energy design work in the home or office call her at (561) 799-3443 or e-mail her, firstname.lastname@example.org or visit her Web site, www.energy-by-design.com.