Thursday, January 5, 2012

Recognizing Hindrances

Some may spring clean, other choose fall cleaning, but for me, every new year, I'm overtaken with the desire to throw open the closets, chase out the dust bunnies and whip this house into the state of immaculate organization.

Of course, I never attain. I'm not sure I want to have a perfectly organized home. I want to enjoy living here. But with my goal this fall to deliberately work on having a home that better fulfills the needs of it's occupants, the work of organizing is on-going.

I've learned a few things about myself through the years. I'm good at starting projects. I love the thrill of pulling out the accumulated stuff, scrubbing down the shelves, purging the useless, and neatly replacing the items.

But it is hard for me to fully finish an organizing project. There is always a pile of miscellaneous items that I don't know what to do with. Maybe they are broken, or missing a part, or just don't belong here, there or anywhere.

So the pile sits, and is shoved from side to side, or pushed in a drawer to be lost until the next organizing binge. The lack of closure to the project brings a feeling of despair. Why dig into another drawer, when I didn't finish this one? How can I start another room, when I don't know what to do with this stuff?

If recognizing the hindrance is half the problem, the other half is removing the hindrance. Maybe this sounds like avoidance, but this fall I found the perfect (for me) solution. I chose an empty corner of the basement to be my catchall.

Of course, I continue to find homes for items as much as possible. Trash and giveaway items have their specific places but any item that I don't know what to do with presently is placed in this basement corner. Maybe some day I can find a perfect place for it. Maybe I'll decide to get rid of the item. But for now, I now where all the miscellaneous homeless items are located. I can't tell you how much this has helped in the past months.

Now I would like to hear from you. What is your greatest hindrance when cleaning and organizing? What have you done to remove the hindrance?


  1. we must be related somehow :)

  2. If in doubt throw it motto mostly but there are always those items that have a question mark. Even those are starting to end up in the 'throw it out' or 'giveaway' category.

  3. Can SO relate, decided to start my new years great organization plan with the Christmas decorations that are coming down. Bought more containers, and shelving and this has come along nicely. Husband and son have been clearing out a storage shed and found all kinds of stuff we'd forgotten about, so these are being added to a neater garage or tossed and given away as appropriate. Biggest challenge is to stay motivated and truly reach a place of real organization!! I am determined that in my life time I actually want to have some sense of real order - even if it only lasts a few days : )

  4. My biggest obstacle is having a place to put things. Things that don't have a place end up in a pile and the pile basically just gets ignored. I would love to have an organized home. Thanks for the post. Enjoy your day and God bless.

  5. I think I need to step back and look at my cleaning patterns and hindrances! You are an inspiration. I think I am an organized person, but there are plenty of chaotic spots in my house that would show you otherwise. So I want to ponder this. Thanks.

  6. Happy to stumble upon your beautiful blog. The joy and love you put into your home is inspiring. I needed the reminder of the high calling of housework!

  7. Derek ad I are organizing today! I love to throw stuff out. This warm winter weather kind of helps get into the "spring cleaning" mode! Isn't it crazy? 60 degrees in January?

  8. Wow another excellent idea!! Thank you!

  9. What an excellent idea! So practical. Now, I don't have a great place to put those items I'm not sure about; our basement is unfinished (rock floor) and not the safest storage area for many items, but I think the idea of having a sort of "way station" for those questionable items is a fantastic one. Thanks for sharing!


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