Monday, April 1, 2013

April Goal: Declutter My Life

As I mentioned yesterday, committing to "cleaning" (by this I really mean getting rid of the clutter) for 10 minutes a night was a huge accomplishment in March. It showed me two essential things: #1- taking small steps is a wonderful way for me to complete big goals and #2- I enjoy a clean and clutter free space (well, I knew this already but I wasn't committed to getting myself there). 

In April, my big goal is to get rid of the clutter in my life. This is something I am always trying for, but I now feel like if I do a little bit each day it will really be attainable for me. Maybe even in a month. 

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Therefore, my April goals are: 

1. Celebrate and acknowledge my successes. I already have some great habits as far as living with less clutter. For one, I have my new found habit of getting rid of clutter for 10 minutes a night. That's not going away. I also visit the library once a week. It's been forever since I bought a real book, and I very rarely even create clutter on my Kindle. I love the library. I also already am in a habit of donating clothes, though I want to go even further with this in April. I also started about a year ago keeping a clean inbox. I delete like crazy, and then move things to folders. It's a nice feeling. In general, I'm not a crazy buyer of stuff. But I could still be better. 

2. Get rid of stuff. In the spirit of my small steps philosophy, I want to get rid of 5 items or clean out one space every day. If I don't have much time, I may just go through the mail that day and find 5 things to recycle, but if I have 15-20 minutes, I will clean out a bag or a space. I plan to donate, give away and sell a lot this month. 

3. Change my blog reading. I still love reading blogs, especially of my blog friends. Since I switched from Google Reader to Feedly, I did some major organization of my reader including deleting people who no longer blog, and reorganizing blogs I read. I now have a section for blogs I want to read every single time they post, and blogs I want to read when I just have a little bit of spare time. I am hoping this helps me not feel massively overwhelmed by my reader every day. 

4. Don't buy any new food until I eat what I have. I need to banish the fear that I will run out of something mid week (who cares? I have a car and a Trader Joe's 3 minutes away!). Last Wednesday I was going to stop to get some food on the way home from spinning, but I ended up getting a ride with a friend so I decided to just eat something I already add. I ended up with a totally random mix of sweet potato, tuna (mixed with greek yogurt) and avocado. It was actually tasty and healthy. I need to do this more often before going out and buying more stuff. 

5. Don't overcommit and then enjoy social events. I have mentioned here before that I tend to overcommit and then get stressed out about things that are supposed to be fun. I know I say all the time that I am going to say no more often and then I never do. This month, I am taking a new approach. I can yes all I want, but then I can't complain (or even THINK about complaining) about anything I already agreed to. Maybe this will encourage me to either say no, or just embrace the crazy schedule? We shall see. 

Have you ever done anything to simplify your life? Send tips my way :) 


  1. Oh dear. I hope you didn't delete me since I never post anymore! Hang in will happen again!!!

    I am having a major urge for some spring cleaning, which will come in handy because we are moving to a new house in a few weeks. I can't wait to organize!

  2. Great minds think a like this month! I suppose I shouldn't be giving you any of the clothes I'm trying to get rid of?? haha ;)

    Also, obviously love your first goal - people (read: me) always forget to celebrate their successes before moving onto the next thing!

  3. I have been decluttering and purging for the last couple of months in preparation for my move. I should have counted the number of bags of things I threw out. I did 2 goodwill drops, too. It was something I needed to do, so I guess it's good that I moved as it forced me to go through things. Like how many race-t-shirts-turned-pajama shirts do I need? Not as many as I had! I also brought a lot of stuff to my parents to store so that my apt wouldn't be stuffed to the max in Charlotte, and I sold some furniture. So I guess March was all about decluttering for me!

    I can't think of anything I've done to desimplify my life. I am kind of like you in that I have a hard time saying no and then I have a hard time getting excited about a full week of social events because I need my downtime...

  4. I think you've inspired me to simplify my life even more by giving up something on social media. It may have to be my blog, really, really soon. Nick is starting to get angry about all the time I spend on my phone and computer :( he cares!

  5. I definitely want to declutter in April as well, I think this will be a goal of mine! Especially my closet. Something about spring just makes me want to get stuff out of the house! I think the goals that you have listed sound really good and really doable - good luck!

  6. How do you like Feedly? I need to make the switch as I haven't done that yet but I will say I don't like that I can't use it with IE. Oh well, I need to get over it :)

    teach me your ways on how to not over commit to social events? I find myself doing that sometimes and it is exhausting! (And then I'm grumpy and do not have as much fun!)

  7. We have moved so much in the last few years, we are able to throw out a lot each time. Decluttering is such a great feeling

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  9. I love your goals!!!

    When we moved to Vancouver we took massive steps to simplify our lives. Largely it was motivated by the fact that we were moving from a house to a condo but it was largely due to wanting a lifestyle change. On the whole, we're thrilled now that we lead a simpler life!! Basically we don't buy anything we don't really need. We don't hoard food, we eat what we have and then go buy more. And there's never any clutter out and about.

    It's worked really well! :)

  10. I started using folders with my Google Reader a couple years ago and it was life changing. Seriously. Like you said, it's so easy to read those blogs that are important to me and glance at others when I have time. Lately, I haven't had much time for reading any blogs. =( I also like your goal of not over-committing ... when you have a set number of things on your calendar, you really can enjoy them, rather than constantly think about how you're going to fit everything in. I'm a reformed over-planner, so I know! =) Good luck this month!