How Does Clutter Happen?

by Tina on October 8, 2010

Let’s talk about something called The Possession Cycle (Terry Prince, CPO-CD). Terry says that there are three stages in The Possession Cycle. First, things are Acquired. Second, things are Used. And, third, things are DisposedAcquire-Use-Dispose.

Hmmmm…. Acquire-Use-Dispose. So, THAT’S how it’s supposed to work! Genius! What happens when it doesn’t work that way? Well, clutter is what happens when things get stuck in a particular stage of The Possession Cycle.

Can you think of things you Acquired that you never Used or Used only once or twice? I’m thinking of some clothing, in particular, and cool new kitchen gadgets that turned out to be not so cool after all.

And then there’s the Dispose stage.  Hmph. Why does it take me so long to dispose of things that I no longer use? Someone else could have gotten years of use out of that hair diffuser attachment to my blow dryer (when perms were still in) had I not held onto it for so long. 🙂

Now, what if YOU didn’t actually do the Acquiring? Other people might Acquire things for you. Do you have a kind friend or family member who loves to shop at garage sales for you? Are there others in your life that can’t pass up a sale when they see something that reminds them of you? Have you inherited items that don’t match your style or interests?

Try to remember that the good people who Acquired these things on your behalf did so with your best interests at heart. They gifted this item to you because they thought you would want it, love it, and Use it. If that is not the case, I am certain that they would not want you to continue to have bad feelings every time you look upon their gift (whether it is displayed or stored away).

To prevent clutter from growing, make sure that all your Acquired things keep moving through The Possession Cycle. Once you’ve Acquired It, either Use it, or make plans to Dispose of it. Someone else NEEDS it. I promise. You can do this.

(The Possession Cycle is used by permission from Terry Prince, CPO-CD,

”Do not store up for yourselves treasures on earth, where moth and rust destroy, and where thieves break in and steal. But store up for yourselves treasures in heaven, where moth and rust do not destroy, and where thieves do not break in and steal. For where your treasure is, there your heart will be also.” Matthew 6:19-21 (New International Version)

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 Hello, my name is Tina Bonifacio, and I am a Professional Organizer working with residential and commercial clients in the greater Savannah, Georgia area. For more information, visit Thanks for stopping by. You are welcome back anytime.

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