by Donna L. Watkins
Having a home free of clutter is a step-by-step process, and consistent principles of organization are the key. Establishing clutter-free zones and give the responsiblity to manage that space to an individual within the home.
If you have the room where people enter your home always clutter-free, you will feel a lot better about having people drop by and you will have at least one room as a retreat. This is usually the living room. When you buy furniture, always make sure it has drawers and cabinets so there are plenty of places to organize things.
Paper clutter is sometimes the worst obstacle in home organization. People keep paper thinking they will need it later. Even if you have a good filing system, you can keep adding more files because you are keeping things that do not need to be kept. Fear of "I may need it later" is the motivating factor to keep too much paper.
Let me guarantee you that you probably won't need 80% of what you keep. We've been in business since 1982 and we still have only one four-drawer filing cabinet. I simply stated that there was no need for more than that! I regularly go through and remove what is not needed. Knowing that I have to do that, I really evaluate what I want to put in it at all.
Something that has helped many is to have a recycling box for paper. You may feel more comfortable about dumping it there instead of keeping it because it will still be around a few weeks later if you truly do need something. Personally, it's a rare event that we have to dig something out of recycle, but it does happen a few times a year.
Taking action is the first step and that's why you are here. Plan it, do it, and stick with it. Make and keep your home a sanctuary.