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The Clutter Within: What’s Your Clutter Personality?

It’s silent. It’s sneaky. It creeps about in corners: clutter!

When the state of the house aggravates you to your last nerve, it’s tempting to launch an all-out battle in the war against clutter.  First, though, know your enemy!

There are as many reasons for household clutter as there are clutterers. As Pogo says, “We have seen the enemy, and he is us!”

Take aim on your household’s clutter problem by going to the root of the problem: your own thinking.

What’s your clutter personality … and which of these internal voices strikes a chord?

The Hoarder: “This might come in handy someday!”

Hoarding is rooted in insecurity, financial or otherwise. Deep down, Hoarders fear that they’ll never have the resources they need if they let go of any possession, no matter how worn, useless or superfluous.

The Deferrer: “I’ll think about that tomorrow!”

Since this behavior is grounded in procrastination, apply the best remedy: action. For Deferrers, simply making a start creates the momentum needed to finish the job.

Remember, it’s easier to keep a rolling stone in motion, than it is to pick it up and start it rolling the first time!

The Rebel: “I don’t wanna and you can’t make me!”

Rebels need to remind themselves that the war is over. They don’t live with Mom anymore—and their own family deserves an adult on the job, not a sulky child.

Tell that inner Rebel, “It’s okay—I’m the parent now, and I want a house that’s nice to live in. By switching places with the old authority figure, the Rebel can find a way out of “I don’t wanna!”

The Perfectionist: “Next week, I’ll organize everything—perfectly!”

Perfectionists are wonderful people, but they live in an all-or-nothing world. They do wonderful things—when they do them!

Perfectionism forms an inner barrier to cutting clutter because the Perfectionist can’t abide doing a less-than-perfect job. Without the time to give 110% to the project, the Perfectionist Clutterer prefers to let matters—and the piles of stuff—slide.

Perfectionist Clutterers need to remind themselves of the 20-80 rule: 20% of every job takes care of 80% of the problem, while fixing the remaining 20% will gobble 80% of the job.

By Cynthia Ewer

*I liked this article, but I think they left out one of the most important clutter personalities…those who rely on the elves and fairies to take care of it. In other words, Mom! I use to ask my kids if they thought the the elves and fairies came at night to take care of everything and there were a few blank stares.