A Proven Guide to Double Your Income by Decluttering Your Messes

The very most important concept I have personally discovered on the topic of Double Your Income is clutter. Or, should I say 'declutter'.
The most oft-quoted statement I have ever made is ...
"Every Mess Is A Lock On The Gate Which Keeps Abundance Out"
it means that, no matter how hard you try and effort, you will be constantly thwarted in your attempt to earn more money if you have lots of Messes.
For example, you may have physical Messes, like:

  • Messy basement
  • Messy garage
  • Messy desktop
  • Messy tax receipts in a 'shoebox'
  • Messy purse or wallet
  • Messy closet
  • Messy car

or... you may have relationship or emotional Messes, like:

  • An upset with someone
  • A grudge
  • A broken promise (for which you have not apologized)
  • A borrowed item that you have not returned
  • Unfiled income tax returns for years
  • Insufficient attention paid to spouse or children or parents

You can easily see how physical Messes, emotional Messes and relationship Messes hurt you by making you feel small, incomplete, ineffective. This is not where you really want to live.

You Must Clean Your Messes. But, You Cannot

Yes, you read me right. You cannot clean your Messes. Why not? Because you are an expert at creating your Messes and you are obviously incompetent at cleaning your Messes. How do I know? Because you have those Messes and they don't go away.
So, if you need to clean Messes but you can't, what is the solution?

The solution is to get help. You need to delegate. You need to others on your team. You need support.

If your garage is a mess, ask a neighbor (who has a totally clean and organized garage) to come to your home Saturday morning and help you. Offer to ply him with beer and pizza. He will likely just do it for free because he loves cleaning garages. In this way, for free or almost for free, you have someone doing part of the work for you or with you.

Be creative. Get the help you need because you are incompetent at doing it yourself.

The next critically important point is that there are Three Steps to cleaning a Mess:

  1. The once-only upfront task of undoing the Mess
  2. The ongoing necessity to have a plan in place to keep this item clean and neat and organized.
  3. An audit, three months later, to ensure you are sticking to the plan These three actions are all totally different. The first one is really tough for you to do because you are incompetent at it. The second is usually not even done, so the Mess simply and unfortunately recurs. The third is the check-up to ensure you are on track.

In detail, here's the three steps that totally work ...

STEP ONE - GET HELP TO CLEAN THE MESS
Find a person or company that can do all or part of the work for you or with you. Hire them. Barter with them. Ask for a favor. Figure it out, but get help.

STEP TWO - GET A PROCESS TO KEEP IT CLEAN ON-GOINGLY
This is a totally different process. It may require a different support person. It is not done once. It is actually not even done at all. It is a plan in place ongoingly which keeps you in the neat place and does not permit slipping back into the clutter place.

STEP THREE - CHECKING ON HOW IT'S WORKING
This is critically important. Not only is Step Two simply not known and hence Messes recur, but Step Three is rarely ever done and so even the best plan begins to slip away and begins to not work.

Here is an example in my own life. My clothes closet was a mess. I asked a friend to come to my home to help me. She loved the idea. She did not charge me anything at all. She just wanted to help.

STEP ONE - SHE CLEANED THE CLOSET WITH ME
She brought out of my closet every single item of clothing. Every single one. Every tie, every pair of underwear, every bathing suit, every shirt, every pair of pants. Everything. I tried on every single item right in front of her. Between us, we decided which of the three categories that item fit into:

GREAT AS IS - keep it and hang it back in the closet
GREAT BUT NEEDS WORK - put it in a pile on the floor for dry cleaning, for repair, for taking in or letting out or hemming etc.
DISCARD - put it in the pile for submission to the Goodwill collection box.
She was so clever in cleaning closets that she actually demanded that I go with her that moment for a drive. We first went to the Goodwill collection box and deposited all the clothes to be discarded. Wow, did that ever feel great. Next we went to my dry cleaner and explained what had to be done with each item. I know it seems silly, but on my own, I would likely have left those two piles on my floor for a while so that I could have some new Messes! But, she knew that and solved it in advance. That's the first step of cleaning the mess. Now, the second step of preventing the return.

STEP TWO - SHE TAUGHT ME HER ORGANIZED CLOSET SYSTEM
She explained that suits go here, then summer shirts, then summer pants, then winter shirts, then winter pants. The underwear, socks, bathing suits, etc. go in designated drawers. My closet was almost empty - but the clothes left in it were actually the only ones I really did wear. I thanked her and thought I'd never see her again. But, I was wrong. She then told me that I would make some mistakes which she wanted to prevent. So, she made an appointment with me to return to my home in three months to check on my progress.

STEP THREE - SHE CHECKED MY CLOSET IN 3 MONTHS TO SEE WHERE I WAS FAILING
She came back and found that my clothes were not in the order she had dictated. I explained that, when I return from picking up my dry cleaning, the clothes are inside a clear plastic bag. I just hang the collection of clothes on the rail and then pull off the bag. But, then the clothes are not in the order she created. She asked me to re-hang the clothes after the bag was pulled off. I told her that I would likely forget. I was absurdly proud of my addiction to closet clutter. I thought that my addiction was more powerful than her de-cluttering abilities. I was wrong again. She was a master. She told me to hang my bagged dry-cleaned clothes on the door knob of my closet door, not on the rail. Then, pull off the plastic bag. Since I was not going to leave my clothes on the closet door knob, and since the clothes were no longer bundled together by the plastic bag, I would naturally take each hanger separately and place it where it belongs. She was right. My closet is now permanently and effortlessly neat.

My final comment is that it is really true that "Every Mess Is A Lock On The Gate Which Keeps Abundance Out." So, de-clutter and keep yourself de-cluttered and watch your happiness level and your income level rise.