The Value of Stuff

Clutter Debris

 

The Loss

In the aftermath of Hurricane Harvey many people are now faced with the loss of much of their personal belongings. I, like many other people around the city, have spent several days helping people sort through what was still salvageable or ruined. Huge piles of people’s lives are heaped onto the medians. Junk haulers and landfills can not keep up.

The Value

This catastrophic event has forced many people to take a sincere look at what their stuff really means to them. Is that moldy piece of decor truly sentimental? That beautiful piece of furniture was very expensive, but can it be replaced? There was joy in finding a simple photograph from childhood, untouched by the waters. A lady’s elderly Father only wanted her to recover one thing from the house she ventured back into: a little notebook full of important people’s contact information.

The Hope

The flood waters have destroyed every type of possession in people’s lives, but let’s turn this negative into a positive. Let’s take advantage of one of the silver linings. It is a chance for a fresh start and a fresh perspective.
If you were affected by the floods; as you start putting the pieces back together, make sure that you really need, use, or love the items you bring back into your life. And let’s make sure the things you really cherish are stored in a manner that they deserve.

The Action

If you lost nothing to the storm; understand that the same could happen to you and perhaps start taking a closer look at the things you are holding on to. Decide if it would be worth having to shovel it out the door or rescue from a fire. And let’s get your truly important and loved belongings somewhere safe.
If anybody needs help or advice, or an objective perspective on dealing with stuff you can contact us any time.

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Our NEW Referral Program is here!

Clutter King is proud to introduce a new program to our company this month: our Clutter King Referral Program!  Here’s how it works:

Grow Our Kingdom!

For every 3 people you refer that use Clutter King’s services, you earn your choice of a free 3-hour organizing session (with one organizer) or a $100 Visa Gift Card!  This is a great way to earn organizing time for yourself (or others- you can gift your hours to friends, family, or clients).  So start thinking of friends, family, coworkers, clients, small businesses or neighbors that would benefit from working with a professional organizer!  We’ve learned that sharing your experience with our company can help others learn about the benefits of getting organized, so share your story!

 

Pledge your loyalty here to learn more!

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“Go Clean Your Room!”

It’s an age-old problem. How do I get my kids to clean their room? How can I get them to keep it clean? There are so many tips, tricks, and methods out there, it can be overwhelming. It’s often easier to just shut the door and forget about it. But for children, there is a simple solution. It starts with fewer possessions and simple organization tools.

For my youngest child, who is a very busy 5 year old, we have an system that enables him to easily maintain his space.

To start, we have always encouraged him to donate things he no longer plays with. We regularly go through the toys and books, and make frequent trips to Goodwill. It’s become part of our ‘normal’, and is not at all painful to give things away. Keeping the clutter to a minimum makes cleaning up so much easier!

Organized Kids Room

 

When we set his room up, we made sure he was part of creating the system. We use the IKEA Trofast storage system, which is inexpensive and versatile. We showed him how to sort toys into bins, making sure the system made sense to him. Dinosaurs go with dinosaurs, little cars together, etc. Once that was complete, we labeled each bin with a picture of the contents. Now, even if he dumps every bin out, it’s still easy to put everything exactly where it belongs. He’s quickly learned not to do that, because we don’t ‘rescue’ him by taking over when the job looks overwhelming. We aren’t teaching him if we aren’t giving him the opportunity to learn from his mistakes.

He does have things that don’t belong in the bins, such as puzzles, books and hats. All of those items have a regular spot that he can reach, and that he set up. However, because most of his possessions are in the bins, everything else is very easy for him to put away.

Organized Bins

 

Before bed each night, he picks up his toys and puts them back in the correct bin, or on the shelf or hat rack. He’s proud of being able to clean up by himself, and we have made it very easy for him to be successful. He isn’t rewarded with money or trinkets for finishing the job… the reward is a clean room, not more clutter!

The key is getting the child to create the system, and keeping it simple enough for him to maintain. Yes, I provided the tools (bins, shelving), but ultimately he organized the toys.

This translates to any age kid. The details might be different, but it ultimately comes down to constant de-cluttering and having simple, kid-created organization that is easily maintained.

Posted in: Children, Clutter

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Ten Minute Tidy – A Privilege!

We have a special time for children in our household every evening called Ten Minute Tidy. A timer is set for ten minutes and the children are tasked to spend those ten minutes picking up things around the house and putting them in their proper place.
Except it’s not really a task. It’s a privilege they look forward to, and complain about missing if overlooked one evening! How do you encourage children to enjoy such a time? Rewards! Whoever was the fastest, or the most effective, or had the most stuff in their hands, or whatever you see them doing, gets an award such as a popsicle at the end of the ten minutes.
Of course everyone gets an award. They know this and look forward to each Ten Minute Tidy. Maybe they think they are getting away with something. But who just got their whole house tidied up in ten minutes? 😀

Posted in: Clutter, Time

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Aspirational Clutter

Have you ever heard of “aspirational clutter”? You may not even realize you have it. It’s tough to recognize as clutter, because it consists of things we hold on to, intending to use one day. We can actually visualize using it.

I would say that unless you have an immediate plan for it, it can be put to better use by donating or selling it. Someone out there is looking for that exact pair of shoes you don’t wear!

I once kept a huge jug of protein powder, intending to use it soon. It migrated from the kitchen to the closet to under the bed before I finally admitted that it was not going to happen in my near future.
What are some things you are holding on to?

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