There is no doubt that most people love their possessions. But, without taking control of your possessions, you will ultimately find yourself controlled by your possessions. One negative side-effect of losing control over how you manage your items is the emergence of clutter. While it seems that some people are particularly adept at preventing clutter, it isn't that they are any smarter than anyone else. Instead, they have adopted a few habits that keep clutter from building and becoming overwhelming. Below are three habits of effective clutter-controllers that can help you maintain control of your possessions:
Adopt the motto of good campers
For individuals who enjoy camping and are knowledgeable about it, a cardinal rule is to pack up and leave the campground in better shape than when they first arrived. For example, conscientious campers take extra time to round up trash and toss it in waste receptacles, even if it was there when they first arrived.
For the homeowner, this translates to leaving a room in better shape than when they first walked in through the door. Effective "clutter cutters" are able to deftly apply this rule to their homes and prevent clutter; instead of looking at a room and trying to get it back to how things were, they take a step further and look for ways to improve it.
For example, imagine you walk into your living room and spy a small stack of old magazines on the coffee table; if you take this rule to heart, you will grab the stack and throw them away when you leave the room. By leaving a room in better shape than when you first arrived, you will not only prevent new clutter from forming, you will also reduce the clutter you do have.
Envision your tomorrow, today
Another clutter-reducing habit is to envision how you will feel tomorrow should you not take steps to address a potential clutter-causing situation. It is human nature to procrastinate, but procrastination leads to clutter accumulation. While leaving dirty dishes in the sink, throwing your socks on the floor or leaving your tools on the garage workbench may make you feel better tonight, your neglect will leave you filled with regret tomorrow as the clutter level is upped another notch.
That's why thinking a day ahead and embracing the emotions you will feel from now will tend to shape today's behavior. Don't allow the illusion of momentary convenience send you into a downward spiral of out-of-control disorganization.
Be the gatekeeper
The simplest way to avoid clutter in your home is by taking a gatekeeper approach to what you permit to pass the threshold of your door. Before you bring anything inside, big or small, make a deliberate decision about the need to have it inside your home. A considerable amount of clutter can accumulate inside your home when carelessly bring it inside and allow it to be planted on a sofa or kitchen counter. For example, when you grab the mail from the box, sort through it before you walk inside with it. Otherwise, there is a high likelihood that junk mail will slowly begin to find its way into drawers, in mail racks, on kitchen tables and all over your home.
If you find there is something you need to keep, but it clearly doesn't belong inside your home, make arrangements for its neat, orderly storage. There are a number of good ways to facilitate this, including the use of attic space, basements and rental storage units. Just keep in mind that you should never your relax your "rules" for reducing clutter, regardless of where you keep a possession, because you will find clutter to be easily-spread to all of your personal spaces. Check out companies like National Self Storage - Denver for more information.