Shopping until your house is breaking at the seams or until your bank account is empty is most likely not going to bring you closer to your dreams, yet in this consumers market we live in the same messages keep popping up. Advertisements and fancy displays get us wanting things we don't really need.
Ever walk into a store with a purpose in mind only to see something that catches your eye, something you had no need for 10 minutes ago but something that now seems to hold your life's happiness?
Ever bought it, taken it home and 6 months later found that you may have only used it once, if at all?
I have been prey to this myself from time to time in the past honestly, yet now I just try to stay away from retail stores altogether unless I have a specific need.
The messages keep coming our way though. Through the TV, Radio, Internet, Newspapers and mailers. A lot of money is spent to get you to buy just about everything.
So, what can we do to help control this and to stop spending money, stop going into debt and stop filling our homes with things we really don't need and won't bring us any closer to happiness?
Well, here is a suggestion. Ask yourself these questions the next time you go out to the store. I give a copy of these to my clients on a little card they can carry in their wallet, and you can do the same thing for yourself.
What you can do is write these down on piece of paper and carry it with you. The next time you get tempted to buy something, pull it out and carefully read it over. If you can be honest with yourself and still come to the same conclusion and decide you really do need the item, then shop with my blessing.
1. Why do I want this?
2. Can I wait to buy this?
3. Can I pay cash?
4. Is it worth the price?
5. Where will it go?
6. When will I use it?
7. Do I already own one?
8. What will my spouse say?
9. Can I borrow one?
10. Can I buy it second hand?
11. Can I get a better one?
My last bit of advice, when you do decide to make the purchase for something you truly need, think quality. Quality lasts longer and doesn't go out of style.
Be happy in the space your in!
I am going to ask you a famous question...How do you eat an elephant?
You should know this one..."One 15 minute bite at a time."
That's the way you can organize your home too, and it can be fun. No really, I promise, it's not that hard and with the right attitude, it will be fun. Now depending on the size of your elephant the overall project time may vary, yet all I need you to commit to is only 15 minutes a day. That's it, 15 minutes. You can spare that for yourself and your peace of mind, right? Good, This is how it goes.
Grab you kitchen timer. If you don't have one you need to go to the store today and pick one up. You can use an alarm clock or stopwatch too, yet make sure it's easy for you to use and it has an audible alarm.
Now where to start now that you're ready...
I want you to just simply walk around your home or office and decide on a room or area that most concerns you. Or one area that is small enough not to scare you away. I suggest starting somewhere somewhat easy just to help get you jump started with more immediate satisfaction. The immediate results will keep you excited to keep going on next session when it's time.
Once you decide, I need you to stand just inside the doorway to the area and look in. Turn your head to the right. Start there. Timer in hand set it for 15 minutes and put it down. Go through and start organizing.
Take anything in that area that doesn't belong there and put it where it belongs, clean and tidy up the area in general and if clutter is an issue be ready with 3 baskets extra. Label these, "Donate, Recycle & Trash".
Treat this time as a bit of a race to speed it along. Just how much can you do in 15 minutes? You will be amazed! That's it! Pretty simple isn't it. Just 15 minutes at time and when the buzzer goes off, STOP! You are in total control. You can stop, or if you wish, you can set the timer for 15 minutes more and go again. But remember, only 15 minutes at a time. Don't try to build Rome in a day, you'll wear yourself out. Only continue if you feel up to it.
Pace yourself because aside from racing yourself to do as much as you can in 15 minutes, it is better to play the tortoise overall, "Slow and Steady Wins the Race" Rather than to burn yourself out too fast. Remember, organizing can take time. A closet can take 4 to 6 hours. A Bedroom can take 6 to 10 hours. The good news is 4 hours in 15 minute increments is only 16 sessions.
15 minutes is small chunks yet eventually the elephant is gone. I guarantee it!
Ready, Set, Eat That Elephant!