What is clutter?

Clutter is a collection of items, ideas, thoughts, tasks, and appointments which impede effectiveness.

We typically associate clutter with physical objects, those “things” we buy and haul around with us out of habit. More specifically, it’s those items that we are constantly making room for, for the sake of making room.

But clutter can also manifest itself in other ways. We can have cluttered thoughts, which distract us throughout the day, such as the nagging to-do lists we fail to write down, or regrets that were never reconciled. It could even be our expectations that we haven’t exactly planned for, which sit at the back of our mind idly waiting for us to “get-to” when the time is right. Our days can be cluttered as well, with too many tasks and appointments, that keep us busy, but ultimately don’t add any substantive value or incremental progress toward the goals we set out to complete.

Mental clutter impedes our decision-making skills and can increase our stress. Decluttering isn’t just about getting your desk and closet in order. It’s about relieving ourselves of all the stuff we’re hanging onto mentally and emotionally, from yesterday, years of moving, and “unfinished business” (whatever form that may be). Allowing yourself to get rid of clutter makes room for a better you and the ability to reacquaint yourself with priorities that were buried underneath.