Minimalism – Decluttering Myths That Are Cluttering Your Mind

Writer Jane Chertoff of recently requested information related to minimalism:

“I’m looking for ideas about common decluttering myths (ex: you have to give away everything you own to declutter) and explain why they are myths + what the truth is instead (ex: you can actually just throw away a few things per room and still freshen up the space).”

If you’ve read my e-newsletter or blog or you’ve attended one of my keynotes or trainings, you know that I preach that “Time management is all about mind management.” Controlling our time has to do with making better decisions about how we use our time. If our minds are cluttered with so many other thoughts and worries, we tend to not make great decisions.

Some of the thoughts that can clutter up our minds relate to our homes. Why is that faucet leaking? Can I delay painting the house another year? Why can I never find what I need in my kitchen? Why can’t my closet just stay organized once and for all? Could I really just get rid of everything? Minimalism scares me; do I have to do that in order to be more organized in my personal life?

To help declutter any confusion about minimalism, here’s what I shared with Jane:

Minimalism has been pretty trendy for the past couple of years. Social media has introduced us to folks who’ve sold everything they own in order to live out of a camper while traveling the globe or move into a fancy 10’x10′ shed. The duo called the Minimalists has a popular documentary and podcast.

A trend that has emerged in response to minimalism is Rightsizing. Find the space that fits your needs – not too big, not too small. Fill it with a comfortable amount of items – not too cluttered, not too spartan. I like to call it the Baby Bear Zone; everything of Baby Bear’s in the Goldilocks and the Three Bears folktale was “just right.”

The brain enjoys seeing some type of open space – on walls, on a shelf, on a table. The open space represents possibilities and opportunities. But the space doesn’t need to be empty.

Envision what you want your space to look like, and then remove a few of the objects that are getting in the way of that vision. During Round 1, objects that are broken or stained are the easiest to part with. During Round 2, remove items that you no longer love or use. As you go through each round of decluttering, it gets easier to let go of items that don’t fit your vision of the space. But you don’t have to whittle it down to nothingness. Find your Baby Bear Zone.

About Helene Segura

As The Inefficiency Assassin™, Time Management Fixer Helene Segura empowers professionals on the go with the tools to slay lost time. Personal inefficiency at work leads to increased stress levels, lower morale, higher absenteeism, more turnover – and rising spending on employee health care and hiring. Why not improve productivity, decrease stress levels, and increase profits instead?The author of four books – two of which were Amazon best-sellers – Helene Segura has been the featured organization expert in more than 200 media interviews. She has coached hundreds of clients to productivity success and performance improvement by applying neuroscience and behavioral modification techniques to wipe out destructive, time-wasting habits.Helene turns time management on its head by sharing both client case studies and pop culture examples to teach her mind-bending framework for decreasing interruptions, distractions and procrastination so that companies can spend more time generating revenue.


  1. Wendy on April 25, 2019 at 8:24 pm

    These tips and references are valuable and highly achievable.

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