Common Characteristics of a Clutter Clearer


Many Clutterholics don’t have supportive friends or family. They don’t understand why you can’t just get rid of everything and start again, and let’s be honest, we sometimes wonder that ourselves.

Some of us have even tried that already. They focus on the negatives, they think we ‘should’ be able to do this quickly and easily, and they pressurise us to make decisions fast.

If we’re not careful, they can be a significant factor in our giving up habit. Usually it’s unintentional on their part – it’s their impatience and frustration being expressed in an unhelpful way.

Sometimes it can be because they’re subconsciously noticing the shifts in YOU – they subconsciously notice and respond to your growing confidence, the fact you haven’t given up this time when you’d normally have given up by now, the fact you’re calmer, more focused, not in a rush to do this.

And of course, when we do start to clear rooms and areas that then stay clutter free, that can actually be very unsettling for those we live with or people who have known we’ve struggled for years or decades. It’s a visible sign that things really are different this time. You haven’t just moved it from corner-to-corner room-to-room or wasted all that time. What they’re responding to – without realising it – is that you’re changing from a caterpillar into a butterfly.

Common Characteristics of a Clutter Clearer

They realise you’re like a caterpillar in a cocoon – or a pupa – while you’re on your Journey. To the outside world you’re not really doing anything, yet when we start to emerge as a butterfly, we’re unrecognisable and able to do things we couldn’t dream of being able to do when we were a land dependent caterpillar.

And they liked the caterpillar. That was familiar and comfortable for them, and we understand that because we were comfortable being a caterpillar for many, many years too. But being a butterfly is SOOOO much better because you can be on land AND you can fly.

Ultimately friends and family notice the change. The family may be supportive of what we’re doing, they may be cynical and impatient at what we’re doing, and they may be downright unsupportive and try to sabotage our Journey in multiple ways.

So here are 10 ways we can deal with unsupportive friends and family to distract them away from making decisions about the physical clutter that they’re not seeing disappear quickly enough according to them – that’s assuming we can’t just ignore them while we’re on our Journey! Decide which one you’re going to try if you have unsupportive friends or family.


  1. LIFE Timeline –  they can help you fill in some of the ‘blanks’ or help with dates so you can understand yourself and your clutter challenge better. People love to share what they know.
  2. Rewards – Plan activities with them immediately after doing a Clutter Clearing Session or the end of a week / a Peak / Step End – a meal, family day, phone call. You don’t have to tell them why.
  3. Success / Gratitude Journal – Share with them the sucesses that you capture, and / or your Scores on the Doors each week. Thank them regularly for being something you’re grateful for.
  4. Worksheet 7’s / Motivational Mood Boards – ask them to help you create them by sharing their ideas, finding images, suggesting words and phrases, what they would like to do more of with you.
  5. Actioning things on your to-do list that you can delegate. Doing the shredding, scanning, taking things to the charity shop, doing the weekly shopping according to your shopping list.
  6. Accountability – ask them if you can call them when you’ve done a Clutter Clearing Session and tell them what you’ve done or learnt – just like a Weekly Wednesday!
  7. Tracking Progress – linked with accountability, they can keep track of how long you spend and how often you spend time working on your clutter. Make sure they understand the 30:10:2 rule.
  8. Have a ‘Clutter Free Reveal’ Party. Invite them when you’re clutter free. Stand back and enjoy the looks on their faces! I’ve been invited to cut the ribbon at clients front doors for their Clutter Free Reveal Parties more than once!
  9. Practical Help – as you start to clear rooms and areas, ask them to find or recommend trades-people etc. You could even ask them to manage any DIY or maintenance work for you.
  10. Thank them – for their patience, even though you know the Journey doesn’t make sense to them. Explain that having a blitz causes you panic / anxiety. Explain you’re going at a safe pace – you WILL clear it and this time Forever if they just trust that you have the support you need to succeed.

If you don’t have supportive friends and family, join a term of online Social Gatherings so you can meet others who can support you appropriately and help you get through the bad days and tough weeks that we all have when we’re clearing our clutter. Find out more here:

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