As someone who truly loves to be outside and playing in the dirt, I want to share with you some of the similarities between gardening and organizing. Did you know that weeding is similar to organizing? No? I want to share with you 5 ways to weed clutter from your home. This will simplify your routine which, in turn, lets you spend more time on things you love.
Remove what you don’t want
When you weed the garden, you remove what you don’t want from that patch of the ground. I have found that one of the best ways to tackle weeding is in small sections of the garden. It is really satisfying to take a bunch of weeds and recycle them by adding them to a compost pile or to a growing bag of garden debris to recycle.
Does this sound familiar? As professional organizers, we ask our clients to focus on one small area at a time.
For example, you can decide to weed clutter from a pile of papers on a table. That table is one space. It is overwhelming to look at the entire room. Just as in a garden, you can decide to mark off a small section around a particular plant and weed only there. It’s important to put on your pretend blinders so you don’t get distracted by the other things around you.
As you tackle the pile of papers on the table, you make smaller piles of things that require your next action. Have some sticky notes available so you can label your piles. The labels may include things like file, pay, call, or shred. This lets you keep some papers and organize the rest. In this way, weeding through the papers is the first step to organize them.
It’s a little simpler in a garden. You will have the plants you want to keep and the weeds which don’t belong.
In the early spring we gardeners often divide plants. This keeps the plants healthy and creates space in the garden. Gardeners donate or sell the plants they aren’t keeping to other gardeners. When you create space in the garden it’s easier to see the beautiful plants.
Think about your closet. Can you easily see what is inside or are your clothes crowded together? Maybe you have an abundance of black pants. More specifically, do you have an abundance of black stretchy pants? You can divide what you have. Donate, recycle, or toss the ones you don’t wear any more. Weeding the excess out of your closet is also organizing and creating space for your clothes.
Look around your home. Are there things hanging around you don’t need, use, or love anymore? Weed clutter from your home by donating, recycling, or tossing these things that are just hanging around. This creates space for you to enjoy and appreciate the things you love to see.
Maintenance weeding saves time. When you schedule a little time each day or a couple of times a week to weed your garden you keep the weeds at bay. They don’t have time to grow and invade your garden because you are in control and your garden remains weed free.
The same is true for organizing your home. When you schedule a little time each day or several times during the week to weed clutter out of your home, you are in control, and your home remains clutter free.
Be a server
Have you ever noticed that the people serving you in a restaurant never have empty hands? They are always either carrying something to a table or removing something from a table. Their hands are never empty. In the garden you might use a bucket or wheelbarrow to carry your tools from one spot to another.
Practice this habit in your home. First remove your blinders, open your eyes, and notice your surroundings. Often, we are so accustomed to our surroundings at home that we don’t notice the things that are out of place.
Pay attention and notice if things are out of place. Then, if something doesn’t belong, carry the things to where they belong as you pass though the rooms in your home.
For instance, if you notice an empty coffee mug beside your favorite chair in the family room carry it with you to the kitchen and put it in the sink. Practicing this habit lets you weed clutter from your home one handful at a time.
Use organizing tools
In the garden we use things like a spade, a trowel, or a clipper. As organizers we have three tools to recommend to you. The first is a card game called Organize Your Home 10 Minutes at a Time. We sell this card game on our website. Each of the 50 cards details one small task which you can complete is just 10 minutes. We know you have at least 10 minutes to do one small task. This is maintenance my friends. These cards will guide you to weed clutter from your home one small space at a time.
The second tool is our clutter support group called Clear Space for You. This group meets once a week for an hour. During the session Jonda Beattie and I guide you to create the steps to get a project you select completed during the month.
The third organizing tool is our free Facebook group called Ask the Organizers. We are there to answer questions live every Monday at 11:30am ET for about 25 minutes. Jonda and I will start the group with a suggested topic for the week.
Here are the 5 ways to weed clutter from your home
- Remove what you don’t want
- Create Space
- Maintenance weeding
- Be a server
- Use organizing tools
Diane N. Quintana is a Certified Professional Organizer® ,a Certified Professional Organizer in Chronic Disorganization®, Master Trainer and owner of DNQ Solutions, LLC and co-owner of Release●Repurpose●Reorganize, LLC based in Atlanta, Georgia.