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All posts for the month February, 2014

Finished with February clutter clearing goals

Published February 27, 2014 by marcistone

I have officially completed the goal for February which was to sort, toss, and organize items in our basement that I keep for business. I cannot believe the drastic change in just the last 30 days.  I have a few large items to list and sell and then I will post before and after photos. I think its amazing.  It actually feels good to see this area again. The closet in this area looks great too and I have some extra space in there (see photos below or in the last blog). I did not go back to the auction and purchase more stuff, but I plan to sometime in the next few months when I have a Friday morning off.  I have set aside 5 boxes of stuff that will be picked up and donated on Tuesday.  There are well over 300 separate items in those boxes. This includes all of the items that I have offered up for free, but have not given away.  Maybe it is a good sign that others don’t want to add to their clutter. 🙂

My original goal was to get rid of one thing everyday this year and I have already given enough away for the next few years and I am only two months in. 

In March, my goal is to go through and re-organize by home office with a little Feng Shui. I just re-decorated it last year and some clutter has built up, I have a lot of books, and some things just don’t flow well. 

Before and after photos of a clutter free closet

Published February 23, 2014 by marcistone

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This weekend, I finished the downstairs closet, eliminated a ton of clutter, put together a new shelving unit and reorganized what was left. See the before and after pics. I had some stuff in this closet that I hadn’t used in 20 years…and now it’s in the large pile for a donation pickup. I organized the shipping supplies, taxes, books, etc. so I’ll have more efficient use.

My goal is to get the downstairs area done by the end of the month, but it could take an extra week or so. Getting the couch out of there can’t happen until we sell the one we have upstairs. Wayne wants to keep the TV downstairs so he can watch DVDs while he works out. I can’t wait to see the before and after picks from this area.

1/3 of Americans have clutter in their home

Published February 23, 2014 by marcistone

Just watched a CBS Sunday Morning special about hoarding. 1/3 of Americans say they have a clutter problem in their homes. Some people feel that their stuff has taken over their home to the point they don’t feel their house is a home anymore.

Groups for hoarders help members to focus on the moment of purchase and analyze why they want to buy an item. Most say it makes them feel happy, but after further analyzation they find it won’t. But they found that most people get a high from the purchase itself. After consistently analyzing purchases, that high goes away. So the buyer can make a rational decision about what is actually needed.

Hoarding is now considered a mental illness, and it effects both the rich and the poor.

Over the last few months I’ve spoken to quite a few people about clutter, and I’m amazed by how many say this: “But as soon as I throw something away, I then find I need it or someone else needed it.” Psychologists say this isn’t true. If you throw away 100 items, you might find that you could’ve used one of them later. Your mind then convinces you that it’s bad to get rid of things. In reality, you most likely have another item you could use instead of the thing you got rid of.

I think it’s interesting that our mind works against us in an effort to get rid of clutter.

Don’t place value on unneeded or unwanted items

Published February 16, 2014 by marcistone

I made some significant progress on the basement living room space today in my year long, clutter clearing project. I’m ready to have several boxes of donated items picked up, and I ordered a new shelving unit for the closet to get it organized.

It’s amazing how certain items are hard to part with and some things I don’t care about at all. Some items I feel I should keep, but I haven’t and won’t use them…so why do I feel so attached to an item that has no value to me? I’m beginning to question my own value system and where it came from.

I’ve also noticed that if I’m even slightly emotional…I have a difficult time getting rid of things. But the next day I’m okay with it. I should make a “maybe” box and reevaluate the items a few days later. 🙂

I came across this 6″ in diameter children’s pool that’s 12″ high. Free (won’t ship) to the first person who asks.

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Getting rid of junk mail clutter

Published February 13, 2014 by marcistone

Getting rid of junk mail clutter

Today, I spent about an hour online and calling companies who send us catalogs and junk mail. I’ve been collecting it over the last month because many companies want codes on the mail itself. Ironically, some companies won’t allow you to unsubscribe to their mailing list online and force you to call them; this is for mail I didn’t even request in the first place. I used a website called catalogchoice.org for most of the junk mail we receive. I’m not sure if it’ll work, but I guess I’ll know in the next few months. Most of our mail goes directly into the recycle bin, and today I told one of the operators of these companies that I didn’t feel it was right that I was throwing away their trash. The operator acted as though this junk mail is highly valued throughout the country and are you sure you want to stop receiving it? Funny.

Quite frankly, I am also annoyed that we are getting mail from AARP. Really? We have at least 20 years until we retire. The operator told me that they start sending mail to 18 year olds now. Wow.

It seems to me that most companies should stop doing direct mail and get their customers through online marketing or email. Victoria’s Secret is one of the worst. I can only imagine what their marketing budget is for the cost of the catalogs. I used to get 5 or 6 each week and I only order things (through the website) about once a year. I called over a month ago to stop the catalog mailings and I still get about 1 a week. Imagine how much money they would save if they just honored the requests to stop sending them.

I’ve also been pretty good about stopping my unwanted email and the number I receive has been greatly reduced (from 20 or more each day to 1-2 that I actually want).

I am firmly committed to getting rid of ALL of the clutter in my life. Perhaps Wayne and Chiquita should be worried. 🙂

Are business items considered clutter?

Published February 10, 2014 by marcistone

I’ve been going through boxes of items that I sell on KSL or online. I’ve sorted items and either re-listed items in bulk, or listed them on another site. I also removed items that haven’t sold online and will donate the items to the Salvation Army. I’ve also found some items that had never been listed. I think the before and after photos will show a huge improvement and some of my organizational skills. 🙂

It’s strange to organize items that I won’t use myself. I guess I don’t consider these items to be clutter because I own them to sell. But they need to be better organized so I can find them easily when I need them.

Organizing business products and supplies

Published February 5, 2014 by marcistone

Over the last few days, I’ve taken before photos, organized a list of what needs to be done this month, and set aside quite a few things to be donated. At first, I thought that the living room downstairs would be completed quickly, but the more I thought about it I realized this area needs some serious time devoted to it and it will take the whole month.

We originally thought we’d use the downstairs living room area as a game room, then as another place to watch TV. We have never watched tv down there unless we were working out or using the personal sauna. We bought a really nice leather couch and it has been down there collecting dust for the last two years.

I’ve mainly used this space as a place to put the items I buy at auctions and resell. And it isn’t organized well. I’d like to get the couch and tv out of there, and for now use this as mostly for auction stuff. The couch will be great upstairs, and I’ll sell the existing one and the TV (most likely). I also need to go through the auction items and see what hasn’t sold in the last year and get rid of those items. I’d like to make space for more auction items and go to buy those sometime this month. Then I’d like this whole area organized. I also plan to buy some shelving units for the closet nearby and organize my shipping supplies. Last year, I spent about $800 on auction items and sold those item for several thousand dollars.

I think this month is going to be fun. I know the before and after photos will be shocking. 🙂