Over the last 5 weeks I introduced a bite sized, simple ‘how to’ guide for starting to get in control of your home so that you can have more time in your life to do the things you love doing.
By using the 5 Simple Steps you will find that your home becomes more organised and it is easier to find things, put things away and to stay on top of things.
But, what if it hasn’t worked?
We might begin to formulate a routine and for a few days we are following it outstandingly but with no accountability it is easy to say ‘ I have been doing so well - I deserve a day off! ‘
So you go a day without, for example, putting things away when you are finished with them. And maybe, on the next day ‘ it doesn’t look so bad! I must have done so well, I’ll leave it another day!’
Then we begin to develop a mild case of ‘clutter blindness’, and piles begin to come back, we begin losing things again - a smell begins to appear from the fruit bowl.
Then POW! All of a sudden, or so it seems, we are back to square one.
The new system hasn’t worked, I’m a failure and I can’t keep an organised space however hard I try.
So what happened? How did you go from being keen, using small simple steps to achieve your goal to deciding that yet another system hasn’t worked and you have failed again?
Well, with full transparency, as a serial ‘system trier’ I can tell you that I honestly do not think there is a system which is perfect and will work for everyone.
This is why I have tried to create a ‘template’, you have the bones provided by me but you flesh it out by adding in things you are already doing. Things which can already be counted as a successful routine. Do you clean your teeth every morning? Put it on your morning routine, make it a consistent success story to start your day! If you start by having an idea of what you are already doing that is successful, be that teeth, breakfast or walking the dog, by creating your routines around this you are starting from an already existing foundation. When you take these habits and do them intentionally and consistently, at the same time every day, you will be able to add in a new habit - like washing the breakfast dishes - a lot easier than if you completely try to change your morning around altogether.
And what about accountability? As I said earlier without accountability we can convince ourselves that this system isn't working when in fact it would work if only we could be consistent.
Having an 'Accountability Buddy' can be a great way to help you stay enthusiastic about continuing with your habits, someone who can point out how far you have come and encourage you to keep going.
This person isn't always easy to find, however. If you are reading this because you don't have a supportive family, partner or friends then it is important that you find another way to motivate yourself.
I have found using a habit tracker helps me enormously. If I can have a visual idea of how I am doing I can see my successes and small wins. In my tracker: creating habits - reaching goals: Journal of Habits (available on Amazon £5.99) the tracker pages are monthly and have a section where you can make a note of how successful you have been or how you need to make changes so you can be successful next month. Although this book has a focus on the bigger picture - setting goals and working towards achieving them - it can be used as a habit tracker pure and simple. You will find that as you keep to your new routines and habits, any goals you may have been putting off become more and more achievable!
When I complete a job for a client I give a follow up package which includes checklists and trackers to help them stay on track. The visual element of these serves to help them carry on the great work we have achieved when I am no longer working alongside them.
However you choose to keep track of your new habits and routines let me know how you get on, you can comment below or look at the end of the blog for all the ways you can contact me privately. I love hearing from you with all your ideas and photos of the areas you are working on!!
For more on how creating habits can change your whole outlook on how you manage your home read my blog: https://www.lindajharper.com/post/how-creating-habits-can-change-your-outlook
For the 5 Simple Steps to Gain Time Everyday to Spend on The Things You Love you can start at Step 1 and gradually introduce the following 4 Steps :https://www.lindajharper.com/post/5-simple-steps-to-gain-time-everyday-to-spend-on-the-things-you-love-part-1
If you want to delve deeper into finding a 'system' which will work for you, you can contact me via my email firstname.lastname@example.org or using the chat bubble on my website, I would love to help you!
You can message me on my Facebook page https://www.facebook.com/Linda-J-Harper-Professional-Declutterer-and-Organiser-107805011001601.
I am also on Pinterest and Instagram if you need some inspiration! https://www.pinterest.co.uk/adnilenaj1314/boards/