82 -Declutter your life . . . and better yet, avoid the temptation to buy it in the first place.

Reason for this Goal:   Declutter your life. Wherever you live now, or aspire to live in the future, make a decision that you will live in a house that is clutter-free.  It will feel like a new start. 

When your living space is full of extra clutter, it is emotionally draining and may lead to decisions to not want to invite friends and family into your living space, which is counterproductive to the desire to develop great relationships with your friends and family.  

It may lead to negativity about your overall living space, and a feeling that you’re not living a good lifestyle.

How to declutter your life . . . 

The best thing is of course to avoid clutter in the first place.  But if it's too late for that and you already have lots of clutter, the following are examples of things you can do to declutter your life:

  • Think consciously about all of your material possessions you currently own, and what you should purge if it hasn’t been used, and you’re unlikely to use it in the future.
  • Every time you receive or bring a new piece of clothing into your closet, give away one other piece.
  • Avoid purchasing knick-knacks that lead to clutter in the first place.
  • When you travel, avoid the temptation to buy memorabilia.  Your photographs will provide you the memories
  • Hire an organizational consultant to get your house in order.
  • Purchase quality over quantity (see Goal 84).

Remember that less is more.  

Anyone who has or has had children know that the complexities of living in a clutter-free house goes up significantly with children.  Find places for your children’s stuff, and develop rules for keeping the house tidy and organized at an early age.

Buying clutter is derailing your retirement . . . 

More importantly though, all of the clutter cost you or someone else money which could have been better spent.

Every dollar you spend on things you don't need represents multiple dollars down the road that could be part of your retirement savings.  

If you invest wisely and can produce a 7% annualized return, your money will double every 7 years (the rule of 72).  Over the course of 40 years, your $ 1 in clutter could have become $8.   (i.e.  $1 becomes $2 ten years later, then $4 and then $8 in 40 years).  

If your annualized investment return is 10% instead of 7%, there is a 5X doubling in just 35 years (resulting in the $ 1 representing a future value of $32!), through the compounding effect.  

This is a great way to view clutter, by associating it with money!

Suggested Goal(s):    Declutter your life and living space.
Your Outrageous Goal:   Keep your living spaces decluttered for the rest of your life.

While this is a life goal included in this lifestyle area of goals, it could also be considered in the financial goals area too.  Avoiding the purchase of clutter in the first place will help you reach your financial goals much sooner.  

Return to lifestyle goals

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Updated: October 27, 2019