3 Tips to Help you Simplify Without the Overwhelm

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You're ready and willing to simplify your home but for some reason it keeps getting put off. It's not that you don't want to streamline the nooks and crannies but it's sort of, overwhelming in a really huge way. 

If this sounds like you, you are not alone! That much I can promise. Oftentimes the biggest reason we as simple-seekers find ourselves not simplifying is because we get overwhelmed with feelings that it's too time consuming, too confusing (you just might need that one sweater for another rainy season... maybe?) and/or it's hard to face the music and actually rip off the bandaid of too much stuff.

It's important to keep in mind that just because you may feel overwhelmed (and yes, you may have stuff lying around) those things don't categorize you as messy or even a hoarder. Stuff just accumulates. It's a part of life. So cut yourself some slack and don't sweat it. Follow these 4 tips to help overcome the overwhelm when it comes to simplifying your home.

1. Start somewhere. The hardest part about doing something (doesn't matter what it is) is starting it. Once you start it you'll feel a sense of accomplishment after you make the first move. This motivation will help you get the ball rolling. For example, I hate the paper clutter that accumulates in my house (I loathe junk mail). I purge all the time, I have a paper shredder, I recycle but the paper still builds. Instead of letting overwhelm beat me, I force myself to dive in on a weekly basis. Once I start separating piles (what to file versus what to shred), I feel better and then I find the motivation to keep going until I see the piles gone.

2. Set a goal. Don't stop until you've met a goal. It doesn't have to be a lofty one. Something as simple as, I'm not going to stop cleaning the closet until I've spent at least 20 minutes doing it. Another goal could be, I'm going to keep organizing until I can easily hang clothes on the top shelf (no more cramming shirts in between shirts). If you set a goal and you achieve it, you'll feel like an organizing rockstar. Trust me.

3. Many hands make light work. According to this article in Psychology Today, a mess can cause stress for a variety of reasons and tackling it with the help of your family, roommates or whoever else lives under the same roof is a simple way to divide the load. Bottom line? Don't do it alone soldier. You weren't the only one collecting the clutter in the first place so invite everyone to help lift the burden.

And remember, living more simply takes constant practice. Similar to eating healthy, you've got to keep at it to see the results. One binge purge might feel satisfying but you'll lasting results if you make a conscious effort to work on it every week. The more you do it, the easier it will come!

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