Not All Clutter is Created Equal

DSCN4391There are two types of clutter: current clutter and dated clutter. Do you know the difference?

Current clutter includes mail you’ve recently received, flyers you picked up at a home show last week, and receipts accumulating in wallet.

Dated clutter includes clothes you spent good money on but haven’t worn in months, rusty old gardening tools you think you’ll use someday, and gifts you received years ago but haven’t touched.

One type of clutter is much easier to part with than the other. Can you guess which one?

If you guessed current clutter, you are absolutely correct. And if you’ve been putting off decluttering your home, this is the best category to begin with.

There are several reasons why it’s easier to eliminate current clutter:

  • It’s visible; it’s out where you can see it rather than hidden behind closed doors where you’ll forget about it.
  • You haven’t had time to develop an attachment to it.
  • It doesn’t hold any memories, hopes or broken promises.

If you are doing this alone, start with the current clutter, because it’s less daunting. 

However, when clients hire a professional organizer to help them declutter, I suggest tackling the dated clutter first.

Although this is more challenging, it has a bigger pay-off. Things that have been laying around for years, unused and unloved, carry a negative charge to them. Whether you can see these items or not, you know they are there – in the dark recesses of the basement or stuffed into the backs of closets. They carry a stagnant energy that can make a space feel oppressive. This can impact the people living there, causing them to feel stuck and unable to move forward in their lives.

What makes it challenging to deal with the dated clutter are the thoughts that come up when you see and touch those things again. The pre-pregnancy wardrobe you thought you would fit into by now. The projects you thought you would complete but never did. The toys you enjoyed with your kids before they became teenagers and seemed to stop needing you.

There are a lot of emotions that come up when we dig through dated clutter – guilt, regret, sadness. And some of them can cause us pain. But feeling that pain, and then releasing it along with the items, is a big step forward. It’s probably one of the main reasons people procrastinate when it comes to dealing with this stuff.

For these reasons, the dated clutter is the best type of clutter to tackle when you are working with a professional organizer.

We are there to get you through these moments of darkness, so you can feel lighter and begin to see clearly. You’ll learn what’s been holding you back from living the life you want and deserve to live. You’ll have the guidance and support you need to help you let go of the ball and chain that’s been keeping you stuck in the past. Only then will you come up for air and see all the amazing opportunities waiting for you in the present moment.




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