We all want to be better, do better and even look better, especially at the beginning of a new year.

Aspirational clutter happens when we purchase something that we aspire or want to do, but don’t use it. Or we may use it a few times, then set it aside.

This type of clutter often results in guilt.  Our home is now filled with unfulfilled promises, unhappiness and sadness.  We feel like somehow that we have failed, if we didn’t get fitter, become a better cook, look more beautiful, or get our homes organized.  This clutter has a huge hold on us.

Of course, there is nothing wrong with having goals. Just be aware of falling into the trap of purchasing something to make that happen.

We are led to believe that we can acquire the life that we want by purchasing the right stuff.  In other words, stuff brings happiness.  We are on an endless quest to get the next great thing.

Here are some examples:

-If I buy this exercise bike (or these weights, yoga mat, etc.), I will become more fit.

-When I buy these skinny jeans, I will magically fit into them.

Aspire to fit into jeans!

Aspiring to fit into skinny jeans.

-I only need to buy this cookware, then I will make delicious meals that my family will enjoy together.

-This makeup will make me more beautiful.

-This organizing book or these organizing supplies will help me finally get my home organized!

Tidying up

Aspire to have an organized home.


From the “Declutter Hub Podcast, Peter Walsh: The Power of Clutter and its hold on us (declutterhub.com)


Here are some suggestions to meet your goals, without purchasing items that can clutter your life and your home.

Want to get fitter? 

-Get your walking shoes out and take a trip around the neighborhood.  You may need to bundle up. But, fresh air along with exercise offers numerous physical and mental health benefits.

Then do it again tomorrow.  Make it a habit and see if you don’t feel better after each excursion.

walk for exercise

Walking is a good way to start exercising

-Try a local health club or YMCA.  Many will offer a free week trial.  Try some classes.  See what you enjoy most.  You may love the treadmill or elliptical, and the best part is that it isn’t cluttering up your home.  You will also enjoy the company of others while exercising at these places.  Insurance plans often provide incentives to help with the cost of these facilities.  65 or better?  You can apply for “Silver Sneakers”.  https://tools.silversneakers.com/

Want to improve your cooking skills?

-Check your community education catalog.  You may enjoy taking a cooking class.  This is also a great opportunity to network with others wanting the same skills. Or there are many videos and recipes available online.  Click here to see some examples.

-If you are trying to have improved family time over meals, get the whole family involved in meal planning.  I have found over the years, that if my children were involved in food choices, while grocery shopping, or participated in the meal preparation, they were much more inclined to eat the final product.  Mealtime goes much smoother when there is less conflict about trying foods. Click here for more tips.

Pleasant family meal

Aspire to have a pleasant family meal with delicious food.

Want to improve your appearance?

There is no need to buy another lotion or a new kind of make-up.  The easiest way to improve your appearance is to drink plenty of water, limit alcohol, don’t smoke and eat a healthy diet. Our skin and the rest of our bodies benefit from these healthy habits.

-Reduce your stress.  Stress hormones can break down the collagen and elastin in skin, which can speed up the aging process.

Want to have a more organized home?

-While organizing books and tools can help, it may be better to start with a plan.

-Begin small.  Select a problem drawer, such as a utensil drawer.  Unload it, sort the items, set aside items for donation, then measure for a utensil holder that will fit your space.

-Feel the weight lift every time you open this drawer!

Organized utensil drawer

Organize your utensil drawer.

-Consider hiring a Professional Organizer if you feel overwhelmed and don’t know where to begin.  Organizers are trained to work with you in this process and teach you along the way!

-Questions?  Contact me at www.keystolivinglight.com

We are all trying to improve ourselves in some way.

Let’s start by being grateful for what we have.  Appreciate what you have and acknowledge when you have enough. This mindset helps avoid unnecessary acquisitions. Cheers to that!