Why I Don’t Let ‘Stuff’ Pile Up

Don’t you love it when you’ve finally gotten your home in order? You can step back, take a deep breath, and everything is organized into closet bins and divided drawers. But what happens next? Ugh. It’s so easy for everything to fall apart and pile up again. Why is that? And what can you do to stop it?

I’ve mentioned before that I have been a relatively organized person since grade school, but that doesn’t make me a stranger to ‘stuff’. I can remember the stacks of papers, books, mail, and other stuff that littered the dining room table as I grew up. The open floor plan of our house placed the ‘formal’ dining area just inside the entry way and on the way to the kitchen and main family living space of the home. This made the dining room table the perfect dumping ground for everything. I don’t mean to imply that my parents were slobs or exemplified that to us – Mom had five young children to raise and was homeschooling the majority of us, and Dad was traveling for work a lot. Plus, the piles were mostly organized ones! 

But when I was growing up in that house, I noticed something. It wasn’t just one organized pile or another that was the problem. The problem was because the piles were left unattended to on a daily basis. Then one pile turned into another and another and pretty soon it did become a mess. 

Perhaps because of this revelation, or maybe because I wanted my own home to be different, I make it a rule never to let stuff pile up. Here are some of my daily tricks:

  • Put it away as soon as you’re done using it. Whether the item is my makeup bag or clothes I wore during the day, the book I’m reading or cold medicine, I put it where it belongs when I’m done with it. This minimizes build-up of stuff to clean up later, and is almost effortless.
  • Deal with the mail daily. Mail is one of the easiest things to allow to pile up – all of those Valpak coupons, un-requested catalogs, credit card offers and bills can really add up to a mess of paper. I have found it’s best to deal with mail first thing when I get home: Recycle most of it (the spam), and file the bills for on-time payment.
  • Putting off dishes is a pitfall. I will be the first one to admit that doing dishes at the end of a long day is not an enjoyed task. However, letting dishes and cookware stack up meal after meal results in a time-consuming and often gross project. While I am no saint at sticking to this particular ‘rule’ (I admit to the occasional day-old dish-washing), I feel much better when I do follow it.

I hope these tips help you avoid the pile-up of stuff!

Featured photo source: Pixabay.com.

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