What Is Hidden Clutter?
Hidden clutter hides from your vision because it is “put away” or organized. It may represent future intentions (like the pile of books you will read “someday”) or the past. Past clutter includes things that may have been useful, things you may need in the future, or may represent memories.
Where To Look For Hidden Clutter: An Example
Hidden clutter is already in a place of its own, so you will have to train your eyes to see it. Let’s start with an easy one: books.
Go to the place you keep books. Remove every book off the shelf that you have already read (Please do this only for your own books!). Is the pile of removed books large?
Can You Get Rid of It?
Now go through the stack of books. Ask yourself the following questions:
- Will I ever read this again? If no, get rid of it.
- Could I get another copy easily? If yes, get rid of it.
- Am I hanging onto this for negative reasons? Negative reasons include:
- Because you want to impress someone
- Because it matches your decor
- Because someone special, or not, gave it to you
If yes, get rid of it.
When I first did this exercise, I ended up donating 6 copy paper boxes of books to the library.
Other Hidden Clutter
You can apply the above steps to other hidden clutter in your lives. Here are some places to look for it:
- greeting cards/letters
- desk drawers or any other closed area
- filing cabinets
Take a look around you and see if you can spot some hidden clutter areas. Sitting at my desk right now, I can see 5 without turning my head. They are there. I challenge you to do something about them!