One of the first tasks Gretchen Rubin started when she wrote The Happiness Project was to declutter her apartment, which was driving her crazy. She later expanded on the idea in her follow-up book Happier At Home. Here’s an excerpt from that book about how decluttering can “make room for joy”.
That may sound a little fruity, but I am a big fan of decluttering. Particularly if you have a small house, or small children, sometimes the clutter can get overwhelming. Since becoming a stay-at-home mum, and ultimately spending more time at home, I’ve started to hate the piles of junk.
Big decluttering projects can take ages, but last week I tackled one little area which was driving me loco. It took no time at all and made me immensely happy.
Most houses have a junk drawer, right? Well we’ve got what we call the “big basket of crap”. It’s tucked away in the laundry and doesn’t bother me much. However, we also have a “junk bowl” on our kitchen island which is a constant source of frustration. It originated to store our keys but has since worked like a magnet, picking up all sorts of silly things.
The junk bowl had to go. You’ll see in the above photo that it contained so much crap including expired fuel vouchers, enough screws to stock a Mitre 10 aisle, lens cleaner bottles, a used toothbrush head (WTF!), bike parts, computer cords…. argh! Everything in that pile could either go somewhere else, or go in the bin, and that’s where they ended up after 10 minutes of sorting. I’ve never been so happy to see an empty bowl.
It was a satisfying day in this stay-at-home mum’s life and I know that it’s a bit sad and I should get a life, already, but I just love simplifying life, getting rid of piles of junk and putting everything in its place.