Sometimes advice is welcome and useful, other times, listening to another person’s advice is the worst thing you could possibly do. You know what it’s like, you have just about decided that you will do something one way and then a friend suggests you do it differently. Now you can’t decide which would be the best method and you can’t do anything at all.
What is the worst advice on decluttering I’ve ever heard?
Getting someone else to organize it for you.
I went on school camp when I was 12. I excitedly packed my bag and was ready to go. Unfortunately my mother was not convinced that my bag was packed correctly and redid it for me. That was by far the worst thing she could possibly have done. For the entire trip I had absolutely no idea where to find anything in that bag. We were sleeping in tents and I wouldn’t say there was the best lighting available. I would put my hand down the side of the bag to find the top I had packed there only to find something else entirely. It was so frustrating. At the time it never occurred to me to simply unpack the whole thing and start again.
For this reason it is extremely important that the person owning the objects be the one managing them. Whether deciding to throw them away or store them in a different location, it must not become someone else’s job.
Ellen says: Ever since I had a professional organizer help, she redid my filing system (the only thing that was working for me) and I haven’t been able to find anything or put it away.
Why it is a problem?
1) It’s their system, not yours
2) They are the ones who have arranged everything not you, so you have no idea where it is
3) You have not learnt the skills you need to keep it that way for very long
It is so important that any decluttering or organizing done in your house is done by you. You take control, you manage the stuff, you decide what stays, what goes and where it is being stored.
When we employ other people to tidy our houses for us, we hand over control to them and don’t learn the skills we need to learn. We can end up with a very tidy home but not have any idea where to find things and have no idea how to keep it that way for the long term.
Learn the skills and strategies you need to organize your house once and for all and to keep it that way. Find out more here.
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