Today at my MOPS (Mothers of Preschoolers) group, guest speaker Dana White (AKA Nony the Slob) spoke to us about cutting clutter and getting organized. Great topic for those of us who have resolved to organize our lives in 2014. She had great tips, and they are designed for people who REALLY need help, however they can work for anyone.
The funny thing is, when she started, I was like, “I am not a slob—I’m pretty organized, so I probably won’t relate to this topic.” But as she spoke, I began to really identify with a lot of her examples. Like when she suggested not making piles when you are decluttering, or you might end up with piles that just sit there, I instantly was hit with the very real image of the huge “donate” pile of clothes on a chair from when I cleaned my closet…three weeks ago. True to form, the pile is now much larger as clothes I do not intend to donate have mysteriously worked their way in, and part of the pile has slid under the chair and eaten a few pairs of shoes. I’m sitting there listening and it was like she was strumming my pain with her fingers. Singing my life with her words. Killing me softly with her song…” Maybe I have a problem.
I’ve never liked a lot of clutter so I try to stay pretty minimalist—but deep down, I know it’s because I am not organized and if I allow clutter in, it will take over pretty quickly. But even with my sparse lifestyle, I have more of a problem with things like dust bunnies in corners, or stacks of mail in cubbies. Here’s something that truly plagues me—dirty floorboards and stairway spindles. My husband will point these out to me, and I’m secretly like, “yeah, the house is full of toys, poop and dishes and you want me to get down on my knees and clean the floorboards?” But what I do is pretend not to hear him and then clean every inch of floorboard the next day. Then I casually say, “where are the floorboards dirty again?” so he can scratch his head and go sit down somewhere. This is not a win-win solution, by the way. Even though confused, my husband gets clean floorboards, and I get aggravation and the time spent cleaning said floorboards. Which means something actually important has to get set on the back burner while I’m furiously cleaning the corners. And I mentioned the spindles, right? If you have these, you know they are dust magnets. And if you have young kids you know they are often covered with dirty, saucy, jammy, painty, peanut buttery fingerprints. And if your spindles, like mine, are WHITE, you know two more things—1. They must be cleaned thoroughly with spray and a rag, no feather duster for you, and 2. Your house was originally designed by a man, or a woman who doesn’t have kids. Fun trivia time: guess how many WHITE spindles I have in my house? The person who comes closest to the number without going over gets absolutely nothing of value. Give up? 105. And don’t get me started on blinds and shutters.
Yes, maybe I do have a problem indeed. I learned a lot from her presentation. Like, you have to be heartless. You can’t get an emotional attachment to every shred of paper in your house if you want to get organized. Check. I can go into any seemingly empty area in my house and fill a trash bag. Except for books. I can never get rid of books. Even bad ones. Another good tip? Worry about yourself first before worrying about other people’s stuff. That’s exactly what I’m going to tell my husband when he complains why I haven’t magically cleaned his side of the closet yet.
I don’t want to spoil all of her information for you, so make sure to check it out yourself at www.aslobcomesclean.com.