Tough Truths About Time


1. Don’t Prioritise or Plan

Most clutterholics and hoarders are what’s called ‘In-Time’ people. This means we’re not thinking about, planning for, focused on, or maybe even aware of what we need to do in the future. We also tend to be impulsive and to ‘live in the moment’ by just focusing on enjoying the here and now.

There are advantages to being ‘In-Time’, but there are also disadvantages. We get easily overwhelmed when we think about what needs to be done, and we hate prioritising and following a plan, even if we’ve put the plan together, because we’re worried we might miss out on something more interesting or fun that becomes an option between now and what we planned to do. We also struggle to focus and finish.

To successfully clear our clutter we have to prioritise and plan SOME of our time (max. 2 hours a day) so we can make time to focus on our Clutter Clearing.

2. Impatience

I’ve had dozens of people over the years who have told me they need to clear their clutter faster than the 2 years it’s realistically going to take from start to finish to complete their 7 Step Journey.

I then ask them how long they’ve had their clutter challenge, and when they tell me it’s more than 3 years, I ask them why – given how long they’ve had their clutter – do they have to clear it faster than 2 years from now? It’s rarely a specific deadline. It’s usually impatience or resistance to accepting help.

If you’re impatient to clear your clutter then ask yourself – how much less clutter do you have now compared to 2 years ago? So realistically, how much will you have 2 years from now if you don’t start your Journey NOW?

3. Try to Multitask

Multitasking doesn’t exist. Your brain literally can’t do it because it’s not physically able to do it. 

It’s been scientifically proven that trying to multitask leads to a 40% drop in productivity, which means that 40% of your time spent trying to declutter is wasted if you’re trying to multitask e.g., trying to make decision while talking to someone. 

In a 2-hour Clutter Clearing Session, trying to multitask means you’re wasting 48 minutes of your time if you try to multitask.

Worse still, a study by the Institute of Psychiatry at the University of London concluded that multitasking could reduce your IQ by as much as 10% and cause you to experience mental blanks. Sound familiar?!

4. Don’t track / plan / have a routine

One of the foundation things you do on your Clutter Clearing Journey is plan your time so you can get into a routine of making regular time to ‘Do the Doing’. Your brain likes routine, even if you don’t. When you have a familiar routine, it literally saves your brain time, energy and effort, which is essential for effective and quick decision making. 

Not having a routine will cause you to flit from task to task, get tired quickly, and you’ll only do your Clutter Clearing when you feel like it (i.e. not often!)

In addition, a routine satisfies a part of your brain called Area 47 – an area that likes to predict what’s up ahead. If your brain doesn’t know what’s happening in the near future, it will respond with being permanently in a fight versus flight mode which increases your stress and anxiety levels – neither of which help with Clearing your Clutter.

5. Easily Distracted

As we know, Clutterholics are mainly ‘In-time’ people. This means we’re easily distracted by a new things and we’re impulsive. There are subconscious reasons why you get easily distracted, but there are also conscious reasons. See how many of the following apply to you:

  • You don’t mute your mobile / cell phone when you’re on a zoom call or face-to-face with other people, and you answer it if it rings. 
  • If the doorbell goes during a zoom / phone call you answer it.
  • You have the TV, radio or music on in the background when you’re doing something.
  • You don’t tell people you’re not available on a certain day at a certain time, so you can focus on doing something that’s important to you without interruption
  • You allow people to interrupt you when you’re doing something important to you.

When your phone ‘pings’, you immediately have to look at it, even if you’re on a zoom call or face-to-face with other people. You tell yourself that’s OK because you’re not going to deal with it, yet you allowed it to interrupt and distract you from what you were supposed to be focusing on. These are all signs you ALLOW yourself to get easily distracted.

N.B: I have fired Private Journey Members for doing these things more than 3 times in any 5 week term…..(!)

6. Can’t say no / People Pleaser

If you can’t say ‘no’ or ‘not right now’ to people because you’re a people pleaser who puts everyone else’s needs first, you are always going to blame other people for not having enough time for your Clutter Clearing.

Learning to say ‘no’ or ‘not right now’ is one of the most important skills you’ll develop on your Journey.

7. Get Up Late

Most people have a conscious or sub-conscious ‘switch off’ time in the evening, after which they’re going to ‘relax’ and not do anything they ‘have’ to do, regardless of when they woke up. For many this is after their evening meal.

The later you get up, the less productive hours in the day you have to work on your priority Wheel of Life goals before your ‘switch off’ time.

Numerous studies have correlated waking up early with success. If you research successful men and women and you will find that almost every one of them starts their day early. Michelle Obama is working out in the gym by 4:30 a.m. Richard Branson rises with the sun at around 5:45 a.m. Dwayne ‘The Rock’ Johnson is in the gym by 5.30am. In contrast, people who get up late are often the ones most likely to complain that there’s not enough time in the day to get everything done.

You don’t have to get up at 5:30am to succeed. However, if you woke up just 30 minutes earlier every day, that would be and extra 3 ½ hours a week, 14 hours a month, 182 hours a year (more than a week of time). Just imagine what more you could achieve in a year if you had that much extra time…..

If you need help to make time for your Clutter Clearing and you want to know how Clare can help you do that, visit her free online help centre now:

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