Day 156: Making Clutter Disappear Without Really Getting Rid of Anything

In her book The Clutter Remedy, Marla Stone explains that once you’ve been through your stuff and discarded what you don’t want, you don’t necessarily need to get yourself stressed about getting rid of more just because it still looks untidy. You just need to learn new tricks on how to categorise and organise your belongings and to maintain the space. Once organised, the clutter is no longer visible because it’s no longer clutter to you.

“You will learn a new way to make years of clutter disappear like an abracadabra trick and without having to get rid of a thing, when that’s not on the cards”

Marla Stone, The Clutter Remedy

Today’s progress

I woke up to an early alarm as my grocery shopping was being delivered between 8 and 9am. Before the shopping arrived, I pottered about quietly downstairs and then relaxed with a cup of hot water and a slice of lemon. I thought about my day and wrote in my planner.

After my initial progress in the utility room yesterday, I wanted to tackle the surface clutter. The room is only small and every inch of the counter top is covered with stuff. As I haven’t yet got a clear picture of what I want to use the space for, I decided that removing everything wasn’t going to be a wise move. I really wouldn’t have had the time to finish the job properly meaning that clutter would have ended up spilling into other areas. That’s what I’ve been doing in other rooms and it just causes me unnecessary stress.

Instead I removed all of the paper and cardboard that I could easily see which reduced the surface clutter by about a quarter. I made a mental note that I need to get better at putting these items straight into the recycling rather than storing them there.

Next, I spotted some pencil cases that the girls recently tried to throw away and I rescued them (bad habit of mine!). There were also loose pens and two or three full pen pots containing random pens, pencils, highlighters and other small stationery items. I decided that going through these and also the pen pot in the kitchen would be a good use of my time this morning; something I could start and finish easily.

At least if I put the pots back sorted, they would actually contain pens that work and pencils that are sharpened. Don’t you just hate picking up a pen that has run out of ink or go to use a pencil and it’s blunt?

I got some scrap paper and scribbled, sorted and sharpened…

Checking which pens and pencils work

I know that there are more boxes of pens etc. in the spare room upstairs and I definitely spotted some in the garage at the weekend. Tomorrow I’m going to find them all and continue going through them until we only have pens and pencils that we want and like. Imagine that feeling knowing that every pen you pick up will work and every pencil has been sharpened. It will no longer look and feel like clutter.

Until tomorrow…



About Sandra Madeira

I am a full-time working mum with a passion for writing and inspiring others. Subjects I tend to blog about are life skills, parenting, decluttering, worklife balance, etc. At the moment I am on a decluttering mission creating space in my house, garden and mind. I have challenged myself to do at least ten minutes a day and write about it. Have a good day! Sandra Freelance Writer
This entry was posted in 2020 Challenge, decluttering, Getting organised, Inspiration, Life, working mum and tagged , , , , , . Bookmark the permalink.

4 Responses to Day 156: Making Clutter Disappear Without Really Getting Rid of Anything

  1. I did that and had so many that were still usable, I knew that I was never going to use them all, some were promotional pens and since I was working at the time I brought them into work as customers were always walking away with them. Since I no longer have that outlet I kept what I could feasibly use in the next year or so and donated the rest to a teacher that said she could use them. I had to toss quite a few because they were dried out and that showed me just how wasteful it was.

    • I hadn’t thought about it like that. Yes, it is very wasteful just leaving them sitting around not being used. That’s made me even more determined to gather them all and either put them out to use or donate them. Thank you

  2. Pingback: Day 366: Wrapping up 2020 From a Clear and Calm Space | Sandra Madeira

  3. Pingback: Sorry It’s Been a While… I’ve Been Decluttering for a Year | My Writing Notebook

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