You guys have ROCKED it with the hot spots this past month. For four weeks, you’ve decluttered, cleaned, and organized your master bedroom closet, your paper piles, your kids’ toys or clothing, and your pantry and fridge.
I am so impressed with everyone’s’ enthusiasm, creativity, and determination. Your community spirit has kept me going here in my own home — there’s something motivating to know there are hundreds of you worldwide, doing the same thing each week.
Thank you for sharing your photos, your ideas, and your comments. It’s been a great series!
We’ve got one more hot spot left; the grand finale. Want to guess what it is?
Hot Spot #5
This week’s hot spot: whatever you want!
Yep, that’s right — you get to choose the final hot spot in your home. So many of you have shared via Facebook or Twitter what hot spot you want covered, and we can spend all year tackling everyone’s wish list. Not gonna happen (I’m ready to get back to writing about other stuff).
This way, you get to completely customize your Project: Simplify experience by tackling whatever area you feel like your home needs most. So now I don’t want to hear any, “I just did this area last month!” or “I just did this but didn’t take any photos!”
Hot Spot Ideas
You probably aren’t short of ideas on areas that need your special touch, but in case you need a little inspiration, here are just a few that come to mind:
- under the bathroom counters
- under the kitchen sink
- junk drawers
- the guest bedroom (is it your catch-all spot?)
- laundry room
- back deck
- inside your car
- files on your computer
- photo collection
- book library
- movie collection
- craft stations — your scrapbooking papers, sewing station, or woodworking tools, oh my
- or catching up on hot spots 1 through 4
Here a few final thoughts on making your home work for you…
Create that family purpose statement.
Organizing is just organizing when you’re putting out fires. But when you create a family purpose statement, and therefore know the purpose of your home, organizing becomes a mission; an act of love.
Enjoy the process.
A simplified home is a journey, not a destination. Your home will get messy again. You’ll probably need to do some spring cleaning again next year (or sometime this fall). That’s okay. You live with human beings, so it’s inevitable.
The goal isn’t a museum-worthy home. It’s one that allows you to live intentionally, full of meaning. Enjoy the process of making your house a home.
Relationships are more important than things.
Don’t trample over your kids or spouse in order to have your home the way you want it. Place a higher value on your family, serving others, and meaningful relationships over a house that qualifies for Better Homes & Gardens.
I’ve said it throughout this whole series — if it takes you forever to decide whether to keep something, it’s taking you too long. It’s not worth the mental agony deciding if the spoon collection from Great Grandma is worth keeping. Does it bless you? Do you see it contributing to your future? Is it beautiful or useful? Keep it. Is it collecting dust? Have you toyed with the idea of posting it on eBay or Craigslist just one too many times? Do you have absolutely no where to put it and you really don’t love it? Get rid of it.
And if you truly aren’t sure, put it in your “maybe” box. If you haven’t gotten it out in six months (and it’s not a holiday item), then you probably don’t find it beautiful or useful. Get rid of it.
This “work quickly” also applies to not biting off more than you can chew. Particularly this week, it might be tempting to tackle three hot spots — but completely finish one area before starting another. Otherwise, you’ll be left with three undone spots, and it might even be messier than when you started. Talk about discouraging.
One is plenty. If you’re able to do more, consider it gravy.
Focus on what you did get done, not on what’s still left.
We recovering perfectionists tend to notice what’s still on the to-do list, not what we’ve already crossed off. Celebrate your accomplishments! If you’re not as far along as you would hope come Friday, still be encouraged you got something done.
Actually, this is true about the entire Project: Simplify series. You may not have gotten as far as you would have liked. But did you do something? That’s better than nothing. And that’s progress. Good on you!
Finish by Friday
Do your best to finish by this Friday. Post your before-and-after photos either on the blog or on the Simple Living Flickr pool, and then come to Simple Mom to link up (I’ll provide a spot on that day’s post). Spend the weekend resting, relishing in your work, and oohing and ahhing over everyone’s accomplishments as you browse the links.
This week’s giveaway
Everyone who participates in this week’s hot spot — and then links to the before-and-after photos on her blog or the Flickr pool — is automatically entered to win this week’s giveaway! As I mentioned earlier, all the prizes are tools to help further simplify your life, not more “stuff.”
Elise Adams writes about life areas that can become enemies to our serenity — CHAOS (Clutter challenges, Home/routine chaos, Addictions, recovery and relapse prevention, Office and room organizing, and Struggles and stress) with specific tools and strategies designed to move us through these tight spots and back into calm, functioning, healthy lives.
Each week she is also on the Dr. Carol Show, addressing ‘Living in Recovery’ topics, offering the lessons she’s learned the hard way to others who may be struggling to find hope. She also speaks to conferences, schools, shelters about my own journey through addiction and dysfunction to a happy, healthy fulfilled life today.
Her greatest joy, however, is working directly, one-on-one with her clients; hearing their struggles and then offering them hope by targeting solutions directly at their specific situations, empowering them to progress toward their goals once again. She’s not in the business of perfection–just steady, hope-filled progress.
Elise is giving one Project: Simplify hot spot #5 participant a custom-designed PRESCRIPTION for PROGRESS PACKAGE. This is a designed-just-for-you, change-your-life plan focused on helping you tackle one of the following areas:
- C-clutter challenges
- H-home/routine chaos
- A-addictions, recovery and relapse prevention
- O-office or room organizing
- S-struggles and stress
In order for her to design your unique Prescription for Progress, this package includes:
- a phone, chat or in-person assessment of your specific situation,
- a written report detailing your situation, and her observations,
- a custom-designed plan, including specific step-by-step strategies to help you move toward your goals, and
- a follow-up session (again, on the phone, via online chat, or in-person) to ensure that she’s heard and addressed your specific situation.
Ready… Set… Go!
I hope you’re excited to tackle the one area that’s been bugging you since this series began. Now’s your chance! And I’m eager to see what you’ve done by this Friday.
I personally can’t decide whether I’ll focus on under the kitchen sink, the other side of my kids’ closet (it serves as miscellaneous storage), or my computer files. What do you think you’ll tackle?