Most of us consider selfishness to be a horrible flaw, a dent in our character and a trait we’d use to describe our worst social enemies on Facebook. But, in reality, when you’re setting out on your organizing project, it is imperative that you remain focused on yourself and nobody else.
Here are two examples of how being selfish will help you to get organized:
- You say: “But my Aunt Rita bought me all of these Lenox porcelain figurines! I have to display them in case she pops over.”
First of all, why is Aunt Rita popping over unexpectedly? That’s rude! But more to the point, this is your house, you pay the rent or the mortgage and Aunt Rita does not. When your home is a reflection of who you are, and everything has a purpose and a place, it is a haven. You will feel embraced by the energy your home emits every time you walk through the door. There is no way you can feel that loving vibe if your home is a guilt trap of gifts that you trip over every time you turn your key. This doesn’t mean you can’t have tokens in your home that remind you of the gift bearer, please just make sure they’re not piles of junk and clutter that get in the way of a functioning, lovely home.
- You say: “Oh, an umbrella, my friend Shirley said she needed an umbrella, I’ll give this to her.”
Hold up, Senator. You’re telling me that Shirley is a fully grown woman walking around the city without an umbrella? I guess that’s one more issue for Shirley and her shrink to work out. But here’s my real problem with this…are you planning to see Shirley tomorrow? No? Okay, then this umbrella with one busted metal leg is going in the trash.
If coordinating a donation to a friend takes more time than you can afford, please skip it and say good-bye to the item. REMEMBER: Getting organized needs to be all about you and figuring out how to streamline your efforts and how to make your space work for you. If you came across Shirley’s birth certificate in your files (why that’s there, I don’t know), then sure, pop it in the mail. But be selfish and discerning about the efforts you make when you’re purging items from your home. Sometimes the garbage, not Shirley’s house, is the best receptacle for unwanted stuff.
Let’s wrap this up. Can friends benefit from your organizing efforts? Absolutely! Can you sprinkle visual reminders of loved ones throughout your home? Absolutely! But when you focus on your time, your energy and your project, you will reach your organizing goals with more speed and agility than an Olympic luge racer. And when you keep to this rule of thumb about putting yourself and your needs first, you’ll be able to maintain the work you’ve done for a whole lot longer.
What items are you holding onto because you don’t want to offend the gift giver? What’s in your outbox to give to a friend that can, quite possibly, be tossed in the trash instead?
With love, light and less clutter,