- Zoom in on a habit. Which habit gets you into trouble most often? The habit may be a style itself (like my dropping and running) or it may simply be connected to a personal or organizational style (like the sheer quantity of items collected by someone with an I love stuff personal style). Zoom in on one of these to target. Then ...
- Catch yourself in the act. By targeting the style, you're more likely to catch yourself and intervene early. Ready to drop that item instead of putting it away? Catch yourself before you drop it and put it where it belongs instead. Ready to add one more thing to an already burgeoning collection? Think about not just its usefulness and desirability, but also where it will go ... before you bring it home.
- Use self-talk. Find a reminder that works and say it to yourself every time that clutter-creating habit you're targeting surfaces. For me, it's "Don't put it down, put it away." A cram and jammer might remind herself to store it, not cram it and someone with the I know I put it somewhere organizational style might ask himself "Where does this belong?" Every time we use our words to remind ourselves what we should do instead, we cement a good habit.
Copyright 2018 Lisa Hess
About the Author
Lisa Lawmaster Hess is a transplanted Jersey girl who writes both fiction and non-fiction. Lisa’s latest book is the award-winning Know Thyself: The Imperfectionist’s Guide to Sorting Your Stuff. A retired elementary school counselor, Lisa is an adjunct professor of psychology at York College. She blogs at The Porch Swing Chronicles, Organizing by STYLE, and here at Catholicmom.com. Read all articles by Lisa Hess.