Recently, a client and I were halfway through sorting a box of clothes and she stood up and said, “wait, I already decided to give these away!”
Has that happened to you? You make a decision, but you don’t act on it, so the clutter stays put and gets forgotten. (A word to the wise: label that giveaway box!)
Deciding and doing are very different activities. You have to make a shift in your thinking to decide on something, then take action on it. When you do, however, you keep the decluttering flow going.
Remember that making a decision is not the entire task. It’s just the first part. The second part is the action part. You need to do both to be complete.
Here’s another example. Say you went on a cruise and saved all the menus from the ship. You decide that out of the stack of 15, you’ll keep three. That’s great. You’ve made a decision to let those three menus contain your wonderful memories of the voyage.
The next step is to go through the stack and pick out the ones to keep. You might decide randomly. You might pick out the special captain’s dinner or one from a special date (birthday, anniversary).
You could try a simple paired comparison where you choose between two menus. The chosen one from that pair now gets compared to the next one in line, until you go through the whole stack. The three winners can now be stored with your other memorabilia.
Once you make the decision and take action, there’s a third step: get rid of the rejected items. Donate them, recycle them or put them in the trash. Now, you’re complete.