“To every thing there is a season, and a time to every purpose under the heaven…
a time to get, and a time to lose; a time to keep, and a time to cast away.” Ecclesiastes 3:1 & 6
Clutter spreads like poison ivy. It sneaks up and overtakes our precious spaces. We can tidy every inch of a counter and within days—sometimes minutes—it’s piled up again. Clutter is a daily battle for even the most organized of people. This fight has driven me to read countless decluttering articles and books. I refuse to let disorder rule or ruin the simplicity and solace of my home. So I continue to learn where and when to keep things and when to let them go.
I also cherish visiting with older ladies to listen to and learn from their experiences. Women who have been there, done that, have a lot to share. They’ve faced the same wars with clutter and have learned ways to make housework less laborious.
Learning from Ms. Faye
Recently, I spent the afternoon with Ms. Faye, a sweet friend who inspires me with her bright smile, hospitality and encouragement. During my visit, I gained tips to share with you when I asked her how she handled her housework through the years. She taught me how to prevent clutter with this simple statement:
“Avoid letting things pile up.”
She handles things once and puts them away immediately. Her house is a perfect picture of that practice. Everything is neatly in its place.
We’re still giggling about a funny thing that happened while we were eating our take-out lunch. It showed her true tidiness when her Styrofoam cup started to fall over. As she grabbed for it, her thumb went through the side and lemonade spewed from the hole. While I was in a panic to find a bowl or something to catch it, she calmly suggested I get the plastic to-go bag.
Once we stopped the gusher, I couldn’t believe how she kept it contained to the counter—not a drop on her clothes, the food, the décor, or the floor. Her self-control prevented a bigger mess. She laughed when I told her she’s the only person I know who could make such a clean mess, then she claimed she had plenty of practice.
While Working Outside the Home
Next we talked about how she kept up the housework with children and a teaching career. She said that during that time she:
- Did the cleaning on Saturday
- Shared the chores
- Delegated tasks to the children
While Working at Home
It’s clear that creating order helps keep order. When she no longer worked outside the home she changed her routine:
- Scheduled her chores
- Selected tasks for each day
While Needing Help in the Home
Now Ms. Faye is blessed to have help with her cleaning once every two weeks. By keeping her house in order, it saves the housekeeper time and saves her money which is a win, win.
No matter what stage of life you’re in, if you struggle with disorder, cutting clutter before it spreads is a good place to start. Clutter is simply piles of procrastinated chores and surplus stuff without homes. Decluttering eliminates the despair and distress piles cause. Remember, less mess, less stress.
“We are troubled on every side, yet not distressed; we are perplexed, but not in despair.” 2 Corinthians 4:8
Bring It Home
Are you overwhelmed with clutter or do you have a decluttering tip to share?
Praying for you as we grow together,