Perfectionism is what we think keeps our standards high, but often it keeps us from making any progress at all. Especially in decluttering.
I used to wear the perfectionist badge of honor. Using high standards and expectations of myself was how I kept myself safe. It was also the way I self sabotaged.
Which sounds like the opposite of being a perfectionist right?
I mean, it literally has the word perfect in it, so it's a little misleading.
Our minds are a funny thing, though. Especially when it comes to avoiding the things we know we need to do, but don't necessarily want to do.
Perfectionism actually holds you back from making progress and reaching your potential
I would tell myself things like, why even bother starting if I can't finish?
What's the point if it can be done to an impossible standard of excellence?
And let me tell you, with kids in my home, neither of those two things were ever going to happen.
So instead of needing to try and put myself on the line, I just didn't do it.
It gave me the best excuse in the world for not getting my home in order because, I hadn't even started or really tried yet. Basically, I couldn't fail at what I hadn't yet done.
How do you start decluttering if you're a perfectionist?
First, know that lowering your ideals does not mean they are not high. You are setting yourself up for true, realistic success.
Make small shifts in your expectations. One way you can do this is by decluttering in bite sized pieces, rather than waiting for perfect circumstances.
Did you know that if you decluttered for just 15 minutes a day, for one year you would have 91 hours of decluttering done?
Any small amount of decluttering your get done matters, and it adds up. You don't need 91 hours to declutter your home. It might feel like it, but you likely need nowhere near that much time.
I have been able to teach hundreds of moms how to declutter their homes in 30 minutes a day in just 4 weeks with my course Decluttering Simplified.
Dive in and take ANY action. Doing anything is better than doing nothing. And doing nothing is actually moving you backward because the stuff doesn't stop coming into your home, and it definitely won't walk itself out on it's own.
Decluttering can actually be a cure for perfectionism
Pre-decluttering, it didn't matter how much time and energy I spent on my home. It was never enough, and I never felt satisfied. Now, post-decluttering I am able to see the messes my family makes and honor them.
Honoring the messes looks like me seeing the toddlers dump their toys, and my daughter bake independently with all the cabinets open and flour on every surface and not internally scream.
I know that we can recover and have the house ready for guests (or bed) in 15 minutes.
The messes are truly embraced. I don't have to pretend to embrace them any more.
Decluttering doesn't have to suck.
I know it's hard. But it's worth it, just like anything else we do.
If you want a step by step decluttering plan, get into Decluttering Simplified. I can teach you how to get this done in 4 weeks! Even if you are a perfectionist.