paper clutter

You may not use a planner consistently, but in a chaotic world of surprises and change, there’s something temptingly attractive about the orderliness of a year neatly encapsulated by dates and appointments.

But a life isn’t so easily captured on paper.  It keeps happening, and all the careful planning in the world gets thrown away as you switch appointments last minute, reschedule coffee dates as other people’s schedules change, and spontaneously decide to ignore everything you’d planned to do today and head for the mountains.

That’s okay. Planners are great tools to attempt to corral a life in real time but they’re useless after the fact. Great idea to pencil in a reminder six months ahead as you leave the dentist’s office, but no need to keep an historical record of visits past. The dentist will call you to schedule your next cleaning regardless.

This Saturday, can you let go of a planner from years gone by? And if you’re just not using this year’s planner, can you let go of that too?

© 2013 – 2019 Joyful Surroundings LLC. All rights reserved.


Joyful Surroundings LLC – (720) 526-2114 – lucy@joyfulsurroundingsllc.com

Need a helping hand dealing with your clutter? If you’re in the Boulder County/Longmont area, here’s how to work with me. If you’re further afield, here’s how to hire a professional organizer.

Everything feels better with an organized home!

The static map captured on paper is almost a thing of the past.

Time was when we all drove around with folded up maps in our glove compartments, ready to pull over and figure out where we were at a moment’s notice. But when was the last time you did that rather than call on your GPS for help?

Countries change, boundaries shift, when was the last time you drove through Boulder and didn’t think to yourself how different everything looks? New stores, new streets and neighborhoods, thank goodness for Google Maps.

National Geographic still includes occasional wall maps, but there’s no need to keep them unless you’re planning to frame them as art.

This Saturday, are there any out-of-date maps you can send on their way? Old triptik travel planners from AAA that are surely going to take you off course, elevation maps of mountains you’ll never climb again with a paper map in your hand, old maps of Nebraska from that cross country trip in 1988?

Inaccurate clutter is irritating. An out-of-date map is unhelpful, so Send it away Saturday!

© 2013 – 2019 Joyful Surroundings LLC. All rights reserved.


Joyful Surroundings LLC – (720) 526-2114 – lucy@joyfulsurroundingsllc.com

Need a helping hand dealing with your clutter? If you’re in the Boulder County/Longmont area, here’s how to work with me. If you’re further afield, here’s how to hire a professional organizer.

Everything feels better with an organized home!

This Saturday’s decluttering challenge is simple but it may not be easy. For today’s Send it away Saturday, can you let go of any newspaper in your space that’s older than a day?

If you only have a few newspapers lying around, that’s not too hard but if you have stacks of them waiting to be read, the challenge may feel too challenging. Older than a day? I’m going to read those newspapers!

Let’s be kind to ourselves and pick a time frame that feels reasonable. Will you save all papers from the past week? The past month? What will feel comfortable for you?

If the answer is still I want to keep them all, then pull out your calculator. I’m going to ask you to multiply the number of minutes it takes to read a newspaper by the number of newspapers you have. And then ask yourself if that’s time you’re willing to spend on out of date information? If it is, please start reading. If it’s not, please start recycling.

If you’re saving newspapers for their historical interest, it’s time to think about how often you look at them and whether it’s possible that there are other copies saved elsewhere. Do you want to continue to be the nation’s unofficial archivist, or would you be happy knowing these papers are accessible online? On some level do you feel a need to preserve history? If that’s a passion of yours and you’re creating scrapbooks that you enjoy looking at, that’s very different from a pile of disintegrating newspapers crumbling away in your basement. If you vaguely imagine yourself proudly showing them to grandchildren one day, ask yourself if all this storing is worth it for one passing ‘That’s cool!’ at best?

If you have a non-reading use for your papers like lining the bird cage, collect data for a week. How often do you change the bird cage, how many sheets of paper does that take, how many sheets of paper come with each morning delivery? This will give you a feel for how much newspaper you use in a week. Keep a little extra just for comfort’s sake and then recycle the rest happily, knowing you won’t be caught short.

© 2013 – 2019 Joyful Surroundings LLC. All rights reserved.


Joyful Surroundings LLC – (720) 526-2114 – lucy@joyfulsurroundingsllc.com

Need a helping hand dealing with your clutter? If you’re in the Boulder County/Longmont area, here’s how to work with me. If you’re further afield, here’s how to hire a professional organizer.

Everything feels better with an organized home!