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The Four Container Method

Sorting Through the Clutter


The Method

Working room-by-room, sort items into the appropriate boxes. Work with one item at a time determining its proper place in your newly organized life. Do not forget to go through closets, cabinets, and storage spaces. Removing clutter from rooms like the kitchen and bathroom may be very easy to do, while rooms with storage containers and closets may take a lot more time.

Work on one room at a time to provide yourself with an easy stopping point for interruptions. When you come to a stopping point, be sure to throw out the trash immediately. Box up the storage box. Place the give away/sell box in the garage, or out of site. If you allow yourself to contemplate the decisions you have made, your brain can trick you into rescuing the clutter. Remember there are a few ,a href="http://housekeeping.about.com/od/getorganized/tp/4-Kinds-Of-Clutter-You-Should-Never-Keep.htm">types of clutter that are difficult to get rid of, but should not be kept.

Things To Remember

    *Items are not equivalent to memories of the person who gave them to you. Pruning items with an emotional attachment can be very difficult. Consider carefully if you need the item to have the memory or emotionally attachment. Ask yourself some questions about the clutter. If you are not sure, consider storing items on a trial basis, or giving them to another family member for safekeeping. Think about taking photos of the item that will store more readily, but give you tangible proof of the memory. If you really feel the need to keep items of this nature, don't fight it. Instead try to incorporate these memories into decorative displays or organized storage.

    *Get rid of old clothing even if it is the size you used to be and hope to return to. It is tempting to keep them for when you reach your goal. Think about instead rewarding yourself with a new wardrobe when you get to the new you.

    *Do not force yourself to keep sets if you only use part of the set. If you cannot break up a set, at least store the portions you do not use.

    *Keeping things just because you might need them someday may seem like a good reason for clogging your closets. Remind yourself that what you really need is space and organization.

So now your trash is gone. Your storage is packed away. Every item you have decided to keep is in its proper place. You have given away or sold everything else. Take a moment to look around your house. You have just taken a major step to organizing your life and freeing up your time and space. Begin enjoying the results.

Check out the Complete Spring Cleaning Checklist.

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