Continued from Organize Yo'sef Part One!
Clean Up! Once you have some boxes, bins and assorted storage 'units', mercilessly clear out the clutter. Be swift and meticulous (like a tidy ninja). Make four piles on the floor: Keep, Store, Toss, Donate. Keep the piles well separated or you will end up losing or keeping the wrong stuff. If you're a genuine hoarder (like mental/emotional issues involving loss etc..) be brave, be bold and realize that you can keep sentimental stuff, just not all of it! Pick a single item that best represents the thing you want to hold onto, e.g. to represent the memory of a loved one or a life event, hold each representative object for a few (JUST A FEW) minutes -- you'll know which one you feel the strongest attachment to. Trust me, you will. Get rid of the other items and be proud of your accomplishment. Don't dwell, don't second-guess, just do.
BONUS TIP -Yay! Gather up all your writing implements (pens/pencils/markers et al.), grab a piece of paper and aggressively write one really good word (like POWER) with each implement-- ditch the ones that are empty, dried up or too stubby to use comfortably. You lose useless clutter and gain a little motivation.
Look up! The average person doesn't make use of wall space above 6'. This is prime storage land! Use it. You can buy some shelves (to house your new collection of storage boxes) or you can make some 'custom' shelves on the cheap. A single sheet of plywood can be easily cut down to four 1'x8' shelves -- that's 32 square feet of storage that you don't have to vacuum around! The only other stuff you'll need to buy are APPROPRIATE hardware (brackets and wall anchors), -- I cannot stress enough how vitally important it is that you use the right hardware! Yes, you may have to spend a few more hard-earned dollars for heavy-duty hardware, but all the storage in the world will do you no good whatsoever if it falls on you and kills you -- some cheapo mis-tint paint (if you are so inclined as to decorate your fantastic new shelves,) and finally, a good sturdy ladder (or sturdy chair, or sturdy footstool) to hang your shelves from and to access all that new-found space.
There you are, some quick, affordable clutter busters for your immediate use -- and you didn't even have to hire a space planner or a contractor.
WARNING! Make absolutely sure that you use shelf hardware that is designed and installed properly to support the weight of whatever you will be placing on your shelves. And do not store anything substantially heavy for its size or dangerous overhead! This is not a good place to display your marble paperweights or spear-wielding Zulu warrior statues.
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