Adult Mental WellnessOrganization for the Home and the MindStress Coping Strategies

Getting Rid of Clutter in 5 Minutes

If you are a perfectionist at heart, chances are you may have an issue with organization. Many of us who are NOT born organizers wait for the opportunity when we will have a good chunk of time in which to clean out this or de-clutter that. Until that time, the clutter-pile grows.

The same may hold true for the perfectionist house cleaner. While waiting vigilantly for a huge chunk of time to fall into our lap in which to do a proper cleaning, the dust builds up. After all, if it’s worth doing, it’s worth doing well!

Some years ago I discovered a website, I likely learned about the site while attending one of the countless seminars and lessons I’d attended on overcoming ADD/ADHD. ADHD-ers aren’t generally known for having everything all neat and organized, because we get 25 plates all spinning at once through our propensity toward multi-tasking. I was (am) no exception.

Strategy 1: Take Small Nibbles When Completing Big Tasks

One of the main strategies FlyLady utilizes to mentor us sidetracked ADHD-ers is taking little, wee nibbles when cleaning and/or decluttering our homes and organizing our lives. Don’t take on the task of reorganizing all the kitchen cupboards. Pick just a couple, for now. This prevents overwhelm and going down time-consuming rabbit-holes.

Strategy 2: Time-Limit Your Task Completion

FlyLady generally prescribes between ONLY 5 minutes for completing any one chore. If cleaning the counters, stove and sinks, take maximum 15 minutes. At the end of 15 minutes, you must stop and move on to the next thing. Setting a timer can work wonders.

By tackling just one wee part of one larger task over a 5-15 minute maximum time frame, you will have done something beneficial, versus waiting until you had the perfect opportunity to take on the entire chore, which seldom, if ever, comes.

Strategy 3: Keep Supplies Handy

Some years ago, a “Born Organizer” friend of mine taught me a secret: Keep a wee bottle of spray cleaner (general purpose glass and surface cleaner) and a roll of paper towel (or washable housecleaning rags) in each bathroom, along with some disposable or reusable rubber (I use nitrile) gloves. With the cleaning supplies being so handy, it is easy to give the taps, sinks, counter and mirrors a really quick spray-and-wipe, every day or two, so that the area is always fairly clean, and thus, seldom requires deeper cleanings. Do likewise for the tub/shower area. Every week, don the rubber gloves and clean the toilet area. There’s no major, time-consuming bathroom overhaul to do when a tiny bit is looked after every day or two, and the added bonus is, the bathroom always looks presentable.

Tiny bites…little nibbles…brick by brick. Once you get in the habit of looking for quick 5-15 minute jobs you can do here and there, you’ll soon find that the build-up of chores and clutter diminishes, and because things get put back into their proper place and are kept clean on a more regular basis, you can find things much easier, and life becomes much less stressful.

Organization for the home results in organization for the mind, which, wondrously, reduces symptoms of stress and anxiety.

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