How little projects can add up to BIG relief!

Last month, I found myself tackling lots of little clutter clearing projects.  And I have to say it felt good to complete lots of little projects that didn’t take a lot of time & energy but together added up to relief.  

First I cleared out the file box that lives under our main floor desk.  Out went the old school papers from last year, the summer community ed. brochure & other summer activity papers.  

The next week, I sorted & cleared the lightbulb collection that had been hidden in a cabinet & was the source of grumbling for years!  (Check out my instagram to hear about that project.)

These lightbulbs had been driving me crazy for years!

Then I cleaned & cleared out the washtub & extra laundry supplies that were waiting to be recycled.  And after that it was on to the mini fridge in the garage.

These projects were not that important or urgent.  They had been hanging around waiting for attention for quite a while.  But September offered the energy of fresh starts/restarts and I took advantage of it.

I might actually have been “procrasticlearing,”  This is a term that Gretchen Rubin describes on the Happier Podcast #175 (you can read or listen here).  It happens when you use clutter clearing as a way to postpone work.  And lots of people do it! 

If you ever find yourself rearranging your desk or testing pens instead of working, then you may be procrasticlearing.  The key is to recognize if you are using this project to avoid doing the actual work that needs attention or if this is something that you have been meaning to do for a while & will lead to better work & more efficiency? 

Gretchen says to ask yourself if this is  “useful preparation or unhelpful procrastination?”  

Looking back, I think I was doing a combination of both.  At times I avoided or delayed work when I dug into the project & other times, it felt purposeful & led to a clear head & greater focus when I moved on to the next thing.  Either way, those little projects created relief in areas of the house that normally were passed by.  And it felt good to prep spaces before the big shift to indoor living.


I’d love to know if you ever find yourself “procrasticlearing” or if this concept seems totally foreign to you.  Comment below & it will go right into my inbox.


If you have longed to clear clutter & feel this relief but don’t know how to start then here’s one idea:

  1. Grab a piece of paper
  2. Enter one space in your room
  3. List all of the things that have been bugging you
  4. Pick one project on the list & break it down into some bite-sized chunks.
  5. Set a timer and work at that small chunk for 30 mins.
  6. The next time you feel the urge to clear, check your list & chip away at another small chunk.

Give it a try.  If you get the urge, go with it!  You might be surprised how much you can get done in a short time & how good you feel after.