is in and I am marking this goal as done.
I can now waltz around the floor of my walk-in closet without tripping over bags of clutter. I was fairly ruthless about each and every item that I let back into my closet. In total, donated 5 bags of gently used clothing and shoes.
Working through this goal gave me an opportunity to reflect on how I go about tackling big tasks like this. I am forever making plans and strategies about doing only so much per day … breaking a big task into little chunks … and that is a guarantee that I never get that task completely finished.
I am better off sticking with a big task for as long as it takes, be that days or weeks or longer, until it is done.
I am marking this goal as done, but I probably did this the hard way. I don’t know that I would recommend to anyone to order new carpet or flooring so that they have to remove everything from their closet, as I did. But I love the new carpeting. And I love being able to walk into my walk-in closet. And I love the new bed, bedstead, and nightstands we got to go with the carpeting (we had been planning for these and saving for the expense since early summer).
and the closet is bare. It took HOURS last night to unload absolutely everything out of the closet (and those hours on top of what I’d done that morning and all the preceding days this week). On a scale of 1 to 10, I would have predicted the painfulness of cleaning it all out would be a 10. But it turned out to be only about a 5. Whew!
I filled two more bags with stuff for the Goodwill, and threw away a bunch of stuff, too. And that’s just the rough, first sorting. The real work comes in choosing, deliberately choosing, what goes back into the closet.
With the carpet deadline looming this Friday, I know that I can let the closet de-cluttering and re-organizing build to the crisis point, or I can step in and head off the crisis somewhat. No matter what, it’s going to be painful, getting 100-percent of everything, including the shelving, out of the closets so that the floor can be clear.
Today, I rented some rolling wardrobe racks, for pick up tomorrow. Our clothes will transfer from the closet rods to these racks, temporarily, while the closet shelving comes out and the new carpet goes down.
I’ve been feeling overwhelmed, every time I opened my closet and confronted the notion of clearing it out. But today I had this small epiphany: It is a FINITE number of items in the closet. It might be a large number, but it is still a FINITE number, and all I have to do is deal with these things one at a time.
So I cleared out a bag of stuff for the Goodwill, and placed a bunch of miscellaneous items into better, more suitable storage spots in our house. I started with the first items on the right-hand end of the closet, and will slowly but surely work my way over to the left-hand side. One-by-one, in order, not letting myself get all abstract-random which prevents me from getting anything done. It is a small start, but a positive one, in terms of not letting this build to a crisis.
My closet needs more than just a little re-arranging of clothing and shoes. My closet has been the repository of all kinds of projects, left-over and out-grown stuff from my children, etc., etc, etc. Major decluttering is needed before the tidying and re-arranging of clothes and shoes can happen.
I have just done the ultimate in setting a deadline: I have ordered new carpet that will be installed on December 18. I have paid the deposit. There is no turning back.
EVERYTHING must come out of our closets, so that the shelving can be removed, before the new carpet can be installed. So even if I can’t manage to sort and straighten and then empty my closet before Dec 18, I will have the joy of sorting through everything as I put stuff back into the closet afterward.
Once upon a time, I’d thought I’d take up spinning. I bought a fleece at a fair, which was a grand adventure a couple of summers ago. But now I know that spinning is not really “me,” so I am passing off to a friend this big box o’ fleece, and that clears out a couple of cubic feet of closet space.
Still much more clearing to do before I can organize.
But, new motivation: We are planning to get new carpeting for the bedroom, and before the carpet can be installed, EVERYTHING has to come out of the closets.
I resumed the Phase One: Major Decluttering project yesterday. The primary source of clutter in my closet is abandoned knitting projects. I culled a bunch of these and am sending the unused yarn to a church group that knits for charity. There’s a patch of clear floor space in my closet now. Still more space to clear. It would have been easier to just keep the closet door closed, so I feel good about applying myself to get this much done.
The first phase has to be Major Decluttering. Today I tackled a big box of stuff that was taking up space on the closet floor. I put away stuff and threw away stuff and donated stuff that was in the box – and then I cut up and flattened the box and put it out for recycling so that I did not have the temptation to fill it back up and stick it back in the closet.