Wednesday, January 11, 2012

The Clutter-Free Challenge

How do you know when you have enough stuff?

I just shake my head (on the inside) when friends come to visit and say, "Your house is so neat and clutter-free." I smile and say, "You have no idea!" Because, yes, at first glance it may seem pretty tidy, but if you look a bit closer you'll notice things hidden behind doors and in drawers. My mom might scold me for this, but here I go. Come with me down the rabbit hole...

So here's the real deal... Charles and I are not total slobs, but the clutter in our home is craziness in a box.

The picture on the top left is a collection of beauty/other products living under my sink. I probably use about half of these items on a regular basis. There are some empty containers down there too... you know, just in case the "natural mixtress" in me awakens. I might want to mix shea butter with peanut butter and marshmallows to make a deep treatment.  O_o
The bottom left is my desk today. This is actually an improvement! Yesterday, I had a stack of papers a foot high on the upper left corner. As you can see, now it's only about 4-inches tall. Yes, I work in this environment sometimes. When people come over, we close usually close the door to this room.

The middle picture is our office closet. We had a handy friend help us add the shelving, and it was great for a while when we used the closet strictly for holding books. But then we added floating shelves to our office walls and moved the books out of the closet. We were organized!  Sadly, after a while we began accumulating binders, art supplies, music, spiral notebooks. It's really in a sad state again. 

The picture on the right is what we call "the junk drawer" in our kitchen. This is where random things go on "permanent vacation." It's an island of twisty-ties, nails, and receipts -- a stew of tiny objects.

Enter "The 15-Day Clutter Free Challenge" led by Glynnis Whitwer, who is also associated with Proverbs 31 Ministries (I enjoy their daily devotions). Today, Jan 11, marks Day 3 of the challenge, but even if you don't start from the beginning, you can still participate. What have I learned so far? De-cluttering is not really about buying more storage or finding better ways to file. It's about asking God for help with everything -- the little things as well as the "big" stuff -- so you can focus on Him, align your will with his, and change the way you think. De-cluttering requires discipline, but more importantly it requires prayer. 

I won't go through the whole thing, but if you know you need help in the area of clutter, I strongly encourage you to check out her site here and just start. For the next few weeks at least, this will be a part of my blog. Whether it takes 15 days or 15 weeks, we have to begin somewhere and stick with it. If you decide to do it, please let me know and feel free to comment or send me a link to your blog/vlog about your experience. I'd love to hear from you. 


Ciaa said...

I thought I was the only one with such problems. I have so many beauty products under my sink that i hardly even use. UHMmmmm I should take this challenge

Shones said...

@Ciaa, sorry for my delayed response! I wonder if some newbie natural could benefit from our surplus product? I fell behind in my 15-day challenge, but I think I need to get under my sink pronto.