I think I might be a clutterer

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Start by preventing new stuff from coming in. If you live in a small house you must be more ruthless about getting rid of things that you don't use. Google this group for Brenda's Bible. She has been there and cleaned out a ton of stuff from her late father. It doesn't happen quickly no matter how ambitious you are. Take " before" pictures and compare them to your situation a year from now.
Barbara in CT
Torge wrote:

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thanks to all. i did a search for Brenda's Bible, but it didnt bring anything up other than your post here. any other suggestions to find it please?

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don't
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There are several copies of it as it has been reposted a few times, one is at: http://tinyurl.com/foa73 or http://groups.google.com/group/alt.recovery.clutter/msg/6dfa274c9b6c2b1c?dmode=source&hl=en
--
You can\'t have everything.....where would you put it?



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http://groups.google.com/group/alt.recovery.clutter/msg/6dfa274c9b6c2b1c?dmode=source&hl=en
thanks. yep it was on the other group...silly me! ive copied it here for anyone else interested. its good stuff thanks. Barbara in CT (Brenda's Bible follows)
Welcome!
I posted the following a while ago and some suggested that I should re-post it when new posters arrived.
The first thing I think one should do is to stop the incoming flow of new clutter. This will take the effort of making a conscious decision to adopt some new habits. Take care of new clutter as soon as it arrives. Throw out junk mail. It doesn't all need to be shredded, just the stuff with personal info on it. If you don't like throwing it out with your address intact on it, just rip off your address and throw out the rest. Shred the address later.
Don't buy things you don't need. Really have a good think about the stuff that lines the checkouts in stores--it's there because they know you are likely to be susceptible to buying that stuff in an unplanned purchase. Some people find it helps to make a list before they go shopping and only buy what is on the list. Never go grocery shopping when you're hungry.
Don't accept "gifts" that you don't need, like when people are moving and they offer to give you their living room suite. If you don't need living room furniture, say "No thanks!"
Don't accept offers of free samples and other freebies unless you are really going to try them or use them. If you hoard, try to stop it. Don't buy a year's worth of something if you don't have room to store it, no matter how good the price is.
Assign "homes" to items you use and keep them there. When you use them, put them back in their home when you're done.
Unsubscribe to magazines you don't ever read--sometimes you get a pro-rated refund. Check out your local library instead of buying books.
When you first get started, don't worry so much about recycling. Excuse yourself from it until things are under control. Then, start by creating an oasis. Choose a small area of your house--like a front entrance hall, a coffee table, etc., something that will be quick and easy--and declutter it, clean it, make it look attractive, and then make a commitment to keep it that way. This can be your starting point--work out from there.
Another way to go at it is to first throw out all of the stuff that would be easiest to get rid of--like a collection of seemingly useful newspapers in the garage--or your collection of empty grocery bags, mayo jars, out-dated makeup, etc.
Another way to get started is to choose something BIG to get rid of that will make an instantly noticeable improvement in your home--like a broken down car on the front lawn--call the junk yard and have it towed awaythe worn out chair that no one sits in because the sprung springs are uncomfortable.
Some people get three containers and label them:
to throw away to keep to donate
Then they get a timer, take their containers into their chosen area to work, and start sorting in 10 or 15 minute intervals. Then they take a break and do something they like, such as have a cup of coffee, play a computer game, etc., and then go back and do a bit more. Many find it helpful to listen to the radio or their favorite music or watch TV while they are doing this. When sorting, some people find it helps to put like things together, i.e. stack all the books in one corner, all of the clothes in another, etc. If you end up with a pile of items that you are "not sure" about--might need them someday--might become highly collectible and valuable--might get interested in this hobby, book, etc. again--put them in a box, seal it up and put the date on it and store it away. Decide how long you are going to wait--a month, a year, etc.--and see if you have to go into that box to retrieve something during that time period. If at the end of your deadline, you haven't had to retrieve anything from that box, don't open it. Donate it still sealed to a charity. I often do this, only I use trash bags, and I leave it sitting in the way in the garage. When I can't remember what is in it and I am tired of working around it, I load it in the car and take it to the Goodwill drop off. This is very painless since I don't look in it to remind myself of what is in there, plus the garage is instantly easier to move around in, which gives me a sort of "instant gratification" (I only have a very small area that I can walk in the garage--BIG clutter problem out there).
One thing that I had a hard time realizing is the value of decluttering closets, drawers, cupboards, etc. I used to think that they didn't have a high priority because you could shut the door--close the drawer --and the mess "disappeared." However, when your storage areas are already full of useless stuff you don't need, you don't have anywhere to put the things you do need and use so they sit around appearing to be clutter.
Probably the best method is the "one small thing" method. Throw out or put away at least one thing every day. Usually you will find yourself doing more. This way at least some progress is made every day--and it stops the downslide.
Something that may be a good idea if you have an overflow of antiquescall an auctioneer and have it auctioned off.
Posting what you have done, problems you are having, etc. to this group helps me a great deal. People here are not judgmental but supportive and very helpful. Plus, reading what others have done can be very inspirational and keep you going if you get discouraged.
Don't try to "binge" declutter." It doesn't work. The clutter will return after your decluttering marathon and you will become discouraged. The key to success is to keep a steady rhythm of progress going while you are creating the new habits. Slow and steady wins the race.
You'll find that as time goes by you not only make noticeable progress, it will become easier to let things go because you will begin to see how nice a room could really look without the clutter, and how nice it would be to use that room. Good luck. We're all pulling for you--because we're all there--or have been there.
Brenda (who is there)
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This is crossposted to two groups. Which group did you google? If it was alt.home.cleaning, probably didn't find it. I dont't remember Brenda's Bible, and I've been coming here for years.
peggo
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Torge wrote: . my problem is that i hate to throw stuff out, but now have so much

What kind of stuff? Magazines, clothes, books, bricabrac - give us some specifics and we can prob. make suggestions.
Personally, I would start with the room that bugs you the most. You could play this game - in that room, pretend you are moving and can only take 5 items. This might highlight those things you hold dear.
Is it that you have too much stuff, or that's it's disorganized or both? Is it that you have a problem with putting things away?
Try again for Brenda's Bible - it's there. We also can direct you to threads on displosing of books, clothes, laundry stratefy, etc. Good luck.
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