Make room for your new life – clear out clutter!

After my divorce a good friend gave me some wonderful advice when I was trying to decide what to do with my wedding ring. She said that I needed to get it out of my home in order to make room for all the good things that were waiting for me to make space for them.

That really hit home because without realizing it, by holding on to that token of my past I was keeping myself from opening to new love.

Now I work with clients trying to make fresh starts in their own lives, and I always share that wisdom with them. Every time we start I hear the list of excuses why they CAN’T get rid of Aunt Ann’s chair, the second set of dishes, the broken mirror, the dusty records in the attic, etc… At this point, after reminding them that they are trying to move FORWARD in their lives, I gently remind them that instead of hoarding the stuff out of fear and guilt, they can let someone else use and enjoy it! Not only will the stuff have a new life, but there will be room in their home and heart for things that will bring them joy to look at and use.
If you are ready to tackle your home and lighten its load, here are five helpful tips to focus the project:

  1. Contain the project. Choose one half of a closet, one quarter of a garage, or one box of papers. Make it an area that you can finish in an hour or two.
  2. Get comfortable and prepared. Have a chair or pillow to sit on, have water on hand, and have boxes ready for the things you are keeping, the things you are letting go, and the things that need further consideration.
  3. Set a timer for one hour. During that one hour do not answer the phone, wander to the fridge, or otherwise get distracted. When the timer dings, take the box for Goodwill to the donation station immediately. Move the Craigslist items to a corner and post them within 24 hours. Action is the key!
  4. Make money.  If you are going to sell your items through Craigslist, decide how you want to use the money you make. Write down that goal or post of picture of it in the workspace you are organizing. By posting a picture nearby of what you DO want then as you hold each item you can ask yourself if it supports the life you WANT or the life you have.
  5. Forget how to read.  Unless you are focussing on paperwork for the hour, NEVER read, sort or file the papers you find while decluttering. You’ll NEVER finish because either you’ll drown in nostalgia or get overwhelmed. Instead, have a small box on hand, toss the papers you find into it, and make that a separate organizing project.

Once you finish an section, celebrate. Imagine how much closer you are to having the life and home you want, and smile!

Hi! I’m Rebecca West.

I’m not your classic interior designer because, frankly, I don’t care if you buy a new sofa. I do care if your home supports your goals and feels like “you.” Remember, happy starts at home!