Help! My room is always a mess, no matter how hard I try. What can I do?

(Reader Question)

I recently had a reader write in with this question:

I can have a peace of mind at home, I pray a lot, I even have a prayer desk beside my bed, but my bedroom is a total mess. Is this normal? I am trying to fix it … Can you give me any tips or advice? 

Here was my response:

If you’ve found a way to manage most of your spaces, but you’ve got one room that is always a mess, you’ve got to figure out why it is, despite your attempts to fix it.

Here are 7 common reasons that might help you figure out why your room is always a mess, no matter how hard you try to keep it clean. 

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Ask This Essential Design Question to Make Your Space Work for You

Have you ever felt dissatisfied with a space in your home, but aren’t quite sure why? You’d like to re-do it, but don’t know where to begin, because it isn’t clear exactly what’s wrong: is it the layout? The wall colors? The decorations? Whatever it is, it just isn’t working for you.

Before spending a load of money experimenting with throw pillows and new art, let alone expensive furniture or wall removal, there’s one essential design question to ask yourself.

What is the purpose of this space?

If you don’t know what you want the space to do for you, it’s hard to know how to make it work.

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Organisation principle #3: Don’t Decide if You Can’t Decide

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We’ve talked about how the difficult part of getting organised are the decisions, and how establishing your bottom line and making the decision once can really help the process along. The goal, of course, is to avoid decision fatigue and decision paralysis, the killers of progress.

But chances are, if you embark upon the great closet/ pantry/ wardrobe clean-out, at some point, you are going to find yourself with a pile of things you just can’t decide on. They somehow defy your bottom line, and you have run out of energy to establish a place for them.

Here’s where an important strategy comes into play: if you just can’t decide, don’t. Continue Reading

Organisation Principle #2: Make the Decision Once

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After you have resolved to minimize decision fatigue, and you’ve established your bottom line, it’s time to implement the second key principle in getting organised: Make the Decision Once.

Did anyone else grow up with the old proverb, “a place for everything, and everything in its place”?

I wish I had accepted its wisdom when I was younger. You see, I thought it was just one of those annoying sayings that adults used to make children want to tidy (how that would ever work, I don’t know), or something highly organized people would say …

I didn’t realize that it would actually save me endless amounts of decision fatigue. Continue Reading

Organisation Principle #1: Establish Your Bottom Line

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Recently, I wrote about the most difficult part of getting organised. Today, I’ll look at the first step to take when actually beginning the process.

What do you care most about? This is your bottom line, and what you are willing to trade other things for. You have to decide this ahead of time, because it will enable you to make decisions when you just want to quit. Continue Reading