One of the down sides of finding deals (did you ever think that you would hear me say that?) is that we have too much stuff. When things go on sale, especially free, I always buy more than we need so that I can use it in the future. (see the previous post) This is most obvious in the items that can be found in our bathroom.
You can usually find great deals on the newest items when it comes to hair products, lotions, and body washes. We are consistently able to try these items for free or close to free. The downside to this becomes the accumulation of items that we keep trying out without finishing.
My example begins in the shower. I wanted to clean out the shower so this meant that all items that were in the shower needed to come out. It doesn’t seem like that big of a deal does it? It becomes time consuming when you are pulling out 4 bottles of shampoo, 4 bottles of conditioner, and 3 bottles of body wash. (This does not include Husband’s items – one shampoo, one body wash.) This may seem like an exaggeration, but it isn’t. I had shampoo for curly hair, straight hair, damaged hair and color treated hair all with matching conditioners.
The upside of this confession is that these shampoos and conditioners were all free, but the downside is that they were making the shower feel a little too cramped. I think I was really shocked as I looked at all of these products. Did I really need all of them?
It gets worse. My curiosity was peaked, so I started going through the drawers and the baskets on the shelf. The amount of hair products was astounding. I found more shampoo and conditioner, tons of hair creams, gels, and serums as well as about 7 types of lotions. Overkill, huh? These lotions were for all sorts of things anti-cellulite, tanning, dry skin, and even stress reducing soft skin.
All of this leads to my idea. I found a box and put all of the items from the bathroom inside. Then I took out one shampoo, one conditioner, one body wash. Next, I brought out two lotions; one to put on the nightstand and one to put in the bathroom. I put the lid on the box and put it as high up in our closet as I could get it. (It is in a super inconvenient place so as to prevent me from sneaking in there to get something on a whim)
This may all seem very trivial and silly, but I think it has a broader application to life. First, the bathroom can now feel like a sanctuary. Before, it just felt cluttered. The last thing I needed in the shower was to have to make one more decision as to which of the 100 different products I need to use. It’s simpler now. Two, our bathroom looks cleaner. There is less “stuff” everywhere and I can actually see the shelves in the shower now. It has an openness about it. Finally, I can actually finish something, throw it away and move onto something new. I can actually complete something from start to finish, even if it is just body wash.
You are wondering where the broader life application is aren’t you? Some things to think about:
If the house doesn’t feel comfortable, you aren’t going to want to spent time there. As far as stay at home moms go, our home is our office and we spend a lot of time there. It is important to be able to look around and have a good feeling about it, no matter what room it is.
Secondly, cleaning is something that I feel like I do all the time. By getting rid of the clutter, rooms instantly look cleaner.
This leads to the final application; completing tasks. I really struggle with following through on things and finishing them. Here’s the irony: I complain that I don’t have a sense of accomplishment when it comes to what I have done in the day. If you don’t finish things, you lack a sense of closure and you forfeit the feeling of reaching a goal.
I know, I know, this is just shampoo and conditioner, but it is a start.