Tag Archives: getting organized

Purging… How to be ruthless with yourself and “just do it”!

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I’ve been absent for a couple of months, and for that, I apologize. I’ve joined the ranks of being “employed outside the home” again, and have been working some really crazy hours! So, on that note, I will try to post as often as possible, but working 10 hour days at least 5 days a week is going to take some getting used to, and I will do the best I can…

Since I started working full-time again, I decided it was a good idea to re-vamp my closet and my wardrobe. I have a lot of clothes that I either haven’t worn in a while, have gone out of style, or simply don’t fit anymore. Most of these items are, or were, some of my favorites for a long time, so parting with them was definitely bittersweet! (I’m one of those people who goes for “the comfort zone” in my attire… I would much rather be comfortable than fashionable when I’m at home. But please don’t tell my Aunt Amy, the ultimate fashionista, that! 🙂 )

Purging is one of the hardest things for me to do, quite honestly. I am very likely to tell myself “I’ll wear it again someday”… Knowing full well that I probably won’t wear it again any time soon, and before I know it, another year has come and gone and it’s still hanging in my closet, unworn and unused. So, I told myself that, *THIS TIME*, I was going to get rid of everything that I haven’t worn for at least a year. (And, then of course, I had a very hard time sticking to it and just doing it!)

I started by taking out everything I *knew* I wouldn’t wear again, and let myself *keep* (for the first run-through) those things that I just couldn’t bear to part with right away. I then walked away and worked on another project for a little while before going back to my closet for the second go-around. On the next run-through, I *made myself* get rid of at least 5 things that I haven’t worn that are still in great shape and could be donated to someone who will love them as much as I do. And lastly (is that even a word?), I turned the hangers of everything else I haven’t worn in a year, (but just can’t get let go of yet), backwards on the hanging rod and gave myself a “60 day” reprieve. If I haven’t worn them by the first of July, I will go through them again and make myself get rid of at least half of those that are still facing backwards.

I’m sure this seems ridiculous to some of you, but I come from a family filled with pack-rats, and I am trying my best to break the cycle. (I still have clothes that my Grandmother made for me as a little girl that I will never give away!) I am taking it one step at a time, and *trying* to be ruthless with myself, and telling myself that I need the space more than I need the clothes that are taking up the space! But, when I finished my purge session, I had enough room in my closet to hang a vertical organizer that will hold all of my sweaters and a few favorite purses! I feel pretty darn good about that! 🙂

And, on that note: I recently found a great website that has *loads* of awesome organizing tips, and a list of “10 Questions to Ask Yourself When De-cluttering”… It’s called Life Your Way, and the following list is courtesy of their website… Go check them out! They can be found at http://www.life.yourway.net… Loads of great information, free organizing downloads, and calendars to help you plan the important things that need to get done!

The 10 questions according to their website, are as follows:

1) Is this item something I use regularly?

2) If not, is it something that I love?

3) Am I keeping this out of obligation?

4) Do I think I should love it?

5) Am I saving it just in case?

6) Do I have multiples of the same thing?

7) Could something else I have do the same job?

8) Am I holding on to it to fix one day?

9) Is it worth the time I spend cleaning it?

*10) Could I use the space for something else?*

I took the liberty of putting asterisks around #10, because I personally feel that this is *the* most important question to ask yourself. Let’s be really honest here… if you *aren’t using it*, *haven’t used it*, and *probably won’t use it* any time soon, then it’s just taking up space and needs to be purged. (Unless, of course, the item is like my “Granny-made” clothes (see #2), and you won’t part with them for any reason!)

Now… Go forth, and purge ruthlessly! See how much better you feel when you’re done and have all that extra space!

‘Til next time!

Peace, Love, and Creativity,

~Lisa~

Fresh String Beads on Artfire

***I originally wrote this blog post more than 4 weeks ago, and because of my crazy work schedule, I forgot to post it! Hence, the time lapse…***

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Moving things around… Re-organizing my stuff!

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So, you know, last week I was cleaning out the drawers next to my desk, right? And I realized, after the fact, that I had only cleaned out the drawer and put most of the same stuff back into it, rather than use the drawer for my “most-used” items and tools, as I had initially planned… Well, this week, I actually got around to rearranging a few things and better utilizing and organizing those drawers! Here’s where I started, and , where I ended up…

After my initial clean-up, but before the re-claiming:

This had been home to my embossing and pigment powders, glitter, and business cards. I moved these things elsewhere, because I simply had no need to have them "right at hand".

After I re-claimed the drawer:

This drawer now holds all my various types of chain, and loads of extra coils of wire in plastic zip bags. (It still needs a "going-through" to get rid of some things and be better organized!

Doesn’t look too bad, though, huh? Well, like I said… it’s a start!

I also started working on organizing my beads better so that I can find what I want, when I want it. Tall order for me, to say the least! I have, quite literally, *thousands* of beads. So, organizing them is definitely a priority… I pulled a giant, antique printer’s drawer I bought years ago, out from under my bed (where the dust bunnies had made quite a nest!) and started cleaning it out and going through the beads I had accumulated from several years past. I even found a couple of strands of expensive beads that I had completely forgotten about buying! (As I’ve cleaned, I’ve also been planning about 6 projects in my head out of those fabulous re-found beads!!)

I’m not going to post a before picture of the printer’s drawer, just out of sheer embarrassment of the dust that had collected there! But here is what it looks like now, and I plan to add a lot more beads to it over the next week or so as I re-organize my collection… Now, I just gotta figure out where to store this monster that *isn’t* under the bed!! 🙂

Printer's Drawer for Bead Storage

I found this antique printer's drawer at a flea market several years ago. It has been under my bed for ages, and is now going to be home to a multitude of various beads! Minus the dust, of course!

And another, closer, shot:

Printer's Drawer

It still needs some more organizing before I'm finished with it, but it's a good start!

Okay, time to go at it again… ‘Til next time!

Toodles…

~Lisa~

Parting is such sweet sorrow… Clearing it all out!

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It is so hard for me to part with my things! I finally convinced myself that it was time to get rid of all the *excess stuff* in my space, and start purging the clutter from my life, but it seems like I am so attached to most of it that I can’t bring myself to let go!

I started going through drawers yesterday, only to find that I had forgotten about a lot of things I had bought to create with in the first place! If that’s not a sign that it’s time to pare down, I don’t know what is, quite frankly…

I chose to start working on the drawers closest to my desk, since I need that space to keep my most-used items close at hand.  I managed to clean out and re-organize 5 (yep, count ’em, 5!) whole drawers!!! They look great, and I am proud of myself for dedicating the time to get it done. But then, after I finished, I realized something… Only one of the drawers actually contain my “most-used” items! Grrrr!!! Well, I guess I could count the second drawer, because it does have empty jewelry and divider boxes in it that I do need and use on occasion. But they are all empty boxes right now, and could, therefore, be put elsewhere. The other drawers contain items that I rarely use, such as adhesives, and embossing and pigment powders. I don’t do nearly as much scrapbooking and rubber stamping as I used to, so I really don’t need to keep those items right next to me. But, I did manage to get rid of a few extraneous things that were just taking up space and didn’t really serve a purpose anymore, so I suppose there’s some measure of success in that, right? (Hey, I’m ready to grasp at straws here, bear with me!) 🙂

Being a “creative person”, you’d think that I could come up with creative ways to store and organize my things. Unfortunately, my brain doesn’t seem to work that way at the moment, and I’m working on that problem, a little at a time.

I promised you some “after” pictures, so I’m going to share what I did get accomplished, and then work on rearranging a bit more, to reclaim the space I need for creating jewelry. I’ll share what I come up with on that tomorrow…

Here’s what I’ve gotten done so far:

Drawer 1 Before:

This drawer contained a huge pile of empty plastic bags, my Dymo Labeler, and odd bits of wire and chain. Not very organized at all!

Drawer 1 After:

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I made dividers from my scrapbooking cardstock to organize my small, but usable, pieces of wire into their proper gauges, so they'll be easy to find at a glance.

Sorry, I missed the Before shot on this one, but this is Drawer 2 After:

This is now empty jewelry boxes, and divider boxes that I use occasionally. Before, it was just crammed *full* of junk!

Drawer 3, Before:

This became the "just put it somewhere out of sight" drawer. A huge mess of embossing and pigment powders, my business cards, and boxes of screws, nails, and other hardware.

Drawer 3, After:

Now, this is just home to the embossing and pigment powders, glitter, and my business cards. I'll end up moving these things elsewhere, because I simply have no need to have them "right at hand".

Drawers 4 and 5, Before:

These two drawers held all manner of adhesives, glue sticks, light bulbs, and other stuff that I just don't use all that much anymore. All of this will end up being relocated.

Drawers 4 and 5, After:

Looks much neater, and I got rid of stuff that belonged elsewhere (i.e. the lightbulbs!) But again, the things in these two drawers will be moved elsewhere to free up the space for things I use most often.

Okay, so I’m off to see what else I can get done this weekend, while I have some free time! Wish me luck, and I’ll have more “after photos” for you next time!

Peace, Love, Creativity,

Lisa

…and don’t forget to come visit us at Fresh String Beads on Artfire!