Organizing without regret

“It’s better to look ahead and prepare, than to look back and regret.” 




When it comes to getting and staying organized, a little planning goes a long way to eliminating regret.

Rushing to toss stuff out without a plan is a surefire way to crash and burn.

And that will lead to you walking away from this project/process and keep you stuck.

You may think that could never happen to you with all your new-found enthusiasm … but couldn’t it?

Have you ever started something before and burned out before you finished?

We need to make sure you don’t strip everything away in a blind frenzy only to find that you got rid of something essential or practical.

Almost everyone agrees that good health, someone to love (and to be loved) and meaningful activity (either paid work or volunteering) are The Happiness Triangle™.

No where in that equation is stuff.



If you’re not independently wealthy, your time = money.

If you are independently wealthy then your money’s time = money. Thanks, Robert Kiyosaki.

Either way, someone’s energy was converted into the stuff that surrounds you.

Even if it was given to you and you didn’t work for it.

Even if you picked it up off the street (which I have done many times here in NYC).

I’m often amazed at what my neighbors consider to be trash.

But that’s another conversation.

Right now, we just need to remember that even free off the street, it did take you some time and effort to get it home.

So nothing is really free.

That’s a great place to start.



When getting organized, when simplifying your life and letting go of all the things that don’t serve you, be mindful of what it cost you to get it into your life, what it costs you to let it go and where it’s going when it leaves.

That’s how you prevent regret.

Do not underestimate the power of the regret “story” to freeze you in your tracks.

In fact, do an unscientific poll of your friends and family, particularly the ones with too much stuff, and see how many of them have a great regret story to justify the clutter surrounding them.

If nothing else, hearing just a few of these stories should motivate you to break free from story and plan appropriately.

With mindfulness and care, review your choices so once something leaves, there is nothing snagging you or tormenting you.

I’ll leave you with this from the immortal Edith Piaf as a final piece of inspiration.


For more easy tips and tools, listen to the UnStuff America! Podcast for encouragement, accountability and more than a few laughs.

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