How Living an Uncluttered Life Can Cost You

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Mmm.. Organizational shows: watch and drool. Suddenly you find yourself grasped by the impulse to tidy your tiny world. Most of us realize that a a cluttered life can cost us money, but how can an uncluttered home put a hole in your purse?

Organization is a window into a world, a world where everything a person owns can be seen clearly. How many of us use something just because we have it, and replace that thing just because we’re used to having it? An uncluttered person can become a creature of habit, and this habit can sometimes lead into price ruts. How many of our routine shopping and spending habits are actually bad shopping and spending habits?

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16 Responses to How Living an Uncluttered Life Can Cost You

  1. Darlene says:

    Well, I do and don’t agree with this article.

    Have you ever purchased something (that you really needed – like a tool) only to discover that you already had one!? But you didn’t remember you had it? Or you knew you had one *somewhere* and spent a lot of time looking for it but still couldn’t find it? That is the ‘other side of the coin’ – if one is so cluttered that it results in duplicative purchases!

    And I propose that one can be organized using an assortment of containers (coffee cans or what have you) and still make it look attractive.

    On the other hand, I do understand the point the author is trying to make. If “being organized” (or cleanliness) is done in such a way that it costs a great deal (or even a little deal) of money or threatens one’s health then, yes, absolutely – it is a problem. And yes, the TV shows are just terrible about showing people how they can be sooo organized if only they will buy x, y, z, and have it professionally installed, etc. (My answer to that one is quit watching shows that are just glorified commercials to try to make you purchase products you might not need!)

    So as the author mentioned briefly, balance is, indeed, the key.

    In my humble (and semi-organized) opinion…

  2. d.a. says:

    Wow… I absolutely cannot relate to what you’ve written in this article. I guess you’re taking tidiness to the extreme in order to make a point on how it can be unhealthy, but again, wow. One would have to be almost pathological for tidiness to become a problem like you’ve written here.

    But I guess it’s fair play for all the articles that try to paint untidiness as a pathology as well.

  3. Stephen Waits says:

    Wow is right. What a bunch of conjecture and crap!

    Go back to writing what you know about. Please!

  4. KRS says:

    A good follow-up article! I think many get into ‘ruts’ with spending habits, and many try to fill visual voids with unneeded purchases.
    Viva Clutter!
    KRS

  5. mbhunter says:

    Not sure about this stance. It’s easy to go overboard on just about anything, and tidiness is no exception. The psychological drain from the constant input from clutter is just as much a hazard as anything else. Storage units with doors that close are a gift from God.

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  7. Maxine says:

    This article was a little “vague” to me….I wasn’t sure if it was a good thing or a bad thing….

  8. Emily says:

    I LOVE this article. I always thought I was a slob, but now I think that I may have a healthy relationship with cleaning (I do it in spurts but most of the time live with clutter). Thanks for making me feel better about myself!

  9. blog.toastyaroma.com says:

    I loved your article, primarily because you really made all the neat freaks squirm!

  10. Jade says:

    Let’s use some common sense. What makes people spend money is not their clutter or lack thereof. It’s a lack of willpower and responsibility or an emotional connection between spending money and happiness or the search for it.

    Ask any creditable financial help source, and they will tell you that the first step to getting out of debt is to organize your finances. You won’t remember to pay your credit card bill if it’s lost on a cluttered desk. Think about it. Do you think the credit card companies or banks subscribe to the idea that a cluttered office building and messy desks will make their business more efficient? No. Run you home as you would a business: keep things orderly not stringent, be punctual, and make smart decisions about what you buy for your home.

    As for cleaning products damaging your health – get on to an eco-advice website and you will find homemade recipes to replace chemically cleaning products with more natural, less harsh alternatives. They are not only healthier – they are also a lot cheaper.

  11. Mike says:

    This article sounds like it was written by a pack rat-slob on the defensive?!?!

  12. April says:

    I totally agree with number 8. However, I think it might just be justification for my sloppy living.

  13. Fooz says:

    Wow. This article makes use of some really tortured logic, oddball assumptions and off-the-wall assertions. I’m not sure if it was supposed to be tongue-in-cheek or what but it certainly didn’t succeed on that level.

  14. Carter Kirkwood says:

    Ultimately everything has a price, even if it is just the opportunity cost (time spent filing away financial documents is time not spent with the kids or on your favorite hobby). Like Jade I try to keep my financial records preety organized, but my gardening tools are much less organized. What I really want is a service that automatically organizes my financial e-documents for me (I get the benefit of being organized and no clutter without the cost of having to get organized). Has anyone tried to organize their digital financial records on their computer?

  15. Shannon says:

    I’m amazed how this topic — which seems like it should be fairly neutral — can really strike a chord with some of us (like me) and really hit a nerve with others. What is it about clutter that is so divisive?

  16. Fooz says:

    “What is it about clutter that is so divisive?”

    I don’t think it’s about clutter. I think the reason this post generated such strong responses is because the author made some really ridiculous, unsubstatiated claims and leaps in logic. For example:

    ” A clean home can be hazardous to your health, and is easy to get to from a tidy home. See dust? Take it down! The speed at which cleaners are gone through add up in dollars.”

    *How* is a clean home hazadous to your health? What are you defining as “clean” Why the assumption that anyone who has a ‘clean’ home used commercially available cleaners or used them in excess? And the statement (if I’m reading it correctly – it’s very poorly worded) that it’s easy to get from a ‘tidy’ home to a ‘clean’ home? Most people I know – including myself – find the opposite is true. It’s all too easy to get to a tidy home to a cluttered one. Obviously there are those out there who are neat-freaks and are maybe too obessesd about keeping their house sparkling. This post doesn’t make any sort of distinctions for those personalities though.

    I know what the author was trying to get at and again, maybe she was trying to be tongue-in-cheek. I have to say though this article could’ve been written in a much better way.

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