As I was making banana muffins this morning, some of the dough got on the tray where I didn't want it to be. I took the time to wipe it off right away. It was quick and easy to clean up. I have found through experience, that it is much easier to wipe something up right away instead of after it is baked onto the pan and needs to be scrubbed off. It needs to be cleaned regardless, so I can either make it easy or make it harder for myself. One way takes less time than the other.
This same method can be applied to the clutter in our homes. If we take care of something right when it comes into our homes, it won't find a place to live and have to be dealt with later. Yesterday our dog had to go to the vet. They gave her back to us with a cute little bandana around her neck. I wanted to give it back right away, since it is easier than bringing it home and having to get rid of it, but I didn't want to hurt their feelings. On the way home, it came off and we put it into the donation bag right away. The bandana didn't even have a chance to come into our home for me to have to deal with later. Maybe I should have had the courage to say no to them at the time, but I would rather avoid offending someone and just get rid of it right away myself. We don't need to be rude to others who don't agree with the way we do things. It could have saved me some time, but I had other things I am going to donate anyway.
Things pile up when we don't pay attention to them right away. The more clutter piles up, the more difficult it is to deal with. We just want to avoid facing it like we want to avoid dirty dishes that haven't been rinsed off right away. It is hard to get motivated to scrape off caked on food the next day. It is hard to face piles of clutter that make it take longer to clean our home.
It is a new year! Why not start now and get rid of the things that don't belong in your home any more. If you try on a shirt that doesn't fit, put it into a donation bag right away. Don't hang it back up. Even if you spent a lot of money for it, it is a sunk cost. It is done, so just learn from the experience and be wiser in the future.