Simplify | What do you do with the stacks?

My artist friend, Sunny-the-City-Girl sent me an e-mail asking about "the stacks."

 What do you do with the stack with the 2 work out schedules , the catalog with the items you to order, the valentines day card,the book you started reading, the quick sketch...

For me, I had to get to a zero point so that I could deal with "stack stuff" as it came in the door.  

  • I had to give myself permission to let go of the books I knew I probably wouldn't finish (even though they were good or I felt like I "should" finish them.)
  • I kept only a few cards--the ones that were life changing--and released the rest.  
  • Magazines and catalogs got recycled. If the information is that important to my success it will find its way back to me. 
  • Workout schedules were harder.  For me it was a number of yoga routines.  Again, I got rid of them and added the two that were most important to me to a notebook. 
Business-type papers were another thing entirely.  I found I had to pull everything into one giant stack and deal with it one piece at a time.  Bit by bit. I thought it was going to take forever, but I sat in front of the TV and dealt with every piece.  Once I "got to zero" I was better able to handle things as they came in the door. 

I now open my mail over the recycle bin tearing everything into tiny little pieces. 

The Fly Lady calls places where stacks collect "hot spots" and has a system for dealing with them.  For me, I had to take the time to get to zero before I could have any success moving forward. 

I continue to grow in the area of simplicity and have found the process to be a bit like peeling an onion.  Each time I deal with a layer, there seems to be another one underneath.  (I still have a huge tub in the garage from the attic cleanse a few months ago, that I haven't had the energy to deal with.) 

I do believe that success in simplifying has a lot to do with breaking things into manageable projects.  You can't do it all in a day, but you can take a drawer, tabletop or other "hot spot" and deal with it 10 minutes at a time.  Enough 10 minute segments and simplicity starts to feel really, really good. 


© Random Cathy
Maira Gall