My Favorite Way to Avoid Clutter Guilt

No script today. You can totally do this one without even opening your mouth.

Just take the box of clutter, stick it in your trunk, and drive over to the nearest donation place.

Basically, it’s the Declutter Now, Answer/Avoid Questions Later approach.

Click here if you can’t see the video.

I have had WAY too much fun doing these videos this week. Y’all have helped make it fun with your responses, but the very best moment was when my oh-so-cool almost-thirteen-year-old laughed out loud (several times!) when I made him watch them.

I’m brainstorming another video series for later this fall . . .

If you can’t bring yourself to just donate without letting the gifter/guilter know first, check out my other posts from this week with strategies to help you move past that point of paralysis:

Help! Please Save Me From My Stuff!!

It’s Not You, It’s Me

The Playing Dumb Approach

When All Else Fails (If Snark Is Your Style . . . )

And here’s a podcast about Clutter Guilt.


When All Else Fails (If Snark Is Your Style . . . )


When All Else Fails - Clutter Guilt Conversations (with videos!) at

I’m kind of questioning whether I should include this one in my series of Clutter Guilt Conversations this week.

It’s not my goal to offend the ba-jillion well-meaning people who’ve said stuff like this to me.

OK. Fine. I’ll share.

This is my favorite response when people just WON’T stop. When they insist they can solve all my problems with their two minutes of life-changing advice.

But even though I think this inside my head, I only say it out loud to certain people.

Warning: This doesn’t work for all personality types. Don’t use it with someone who can’t laugh about it with you later. Be ready for them to be mad at you.

When someone doesn’t know me, I just smile and change the subject. Like, interrupt them mid-judgmental-sentence and ask where they get their hair cut.

Really. And that is a MUCH better option, people. Much better.

But those who know me know to expect things like this to come out of my mouth. So here goes:

(Don’t watch it if you’ll be disappointed in me for NOT taking the high road on this one.)

Go here if you can’t see the video.

Other Person: Blah, blah blah . . . you know you really should . . . I have just never understood why anyone would want their house to be that messy . . . so on and so forth

Me: Wow. I don’t have the time right now since I’m decluttering, but someday, I want us to sit down and talk so you can tell me exactly how it feels to be perfect.


Here are my other conversations. They’re much more helpful:

Help! Please Save Me From My Stuff!!

It’s Not You, It’s Me

The Playing Dumb Approach

Don’t forget about this amazing giveaway from Extra Space Storage. It ends TONIGHT! Hopefully, you’ll read this in time to declutter something (your fridge, a cabinet, a closet, whatever!) and enter the giveaway!! Go here for the rules and to find out how to enter!


The “Please Save Me From My Stuff” Approach – Clutter Guilt Conversations

Please Help Save Me From My Stuff!! Clutter Guilt Conversations (VIDEOS at

Another video for the Clutter Guilt Series I have going this week!

Honestly, other than just not telling someone I’m donating something they gave me, this is the method I use most. It’s what I’ve found to be most effective when explaining to someone that I need to get rid of something they think I should keep.

It’s always been pretty obvious to anyone I know that I struggle with clutter. People love to be helpful. Framing the conversation that way can really defuse the argument.

If you can’t see the video, watch it here.

Here’s the script:

The Please Save Me From My Stuff Approach

GUILTEE: (on the phone) Hey, how are you?

GUILTER: Good, what’s going on with you?

GUILTEE: Well . . . I’m working on getting the clutter out of my house.

GUILTER: (Too excited) Oh that’s great! I’m so glad!!!!!

GUILTEE: Yes, it’s so much work, but I’m determined to make get my house in shape!

GUILTER: Oh, I’m so proud of you! You are going to be so much happier when you’re done!

GUILTEE: Oh I know! I can already tell a difference in how I feel and I still have more to declutter!!

GUILTER: (Overly, annoyingly excited.) Lots more, I bet!

GUILTEE: Yes, and I’m amazed at how much easier it is to clean up in the rooms I’ve decluttered.

GUILTER: (Big, annoying, know-it-all nod) Mmm-hmmmm. Girl, you are sooo right. I think you’ll be able to finally keep it clean if you can get rid of all that junk you have.

GUILTEE: (crossed eyes and pained smile) Mmmm-hmmm. Thanks for the encouragement.

GUILTER: Listen, sweetie, if there’s ANYthing I can do to help you, just let me know. I mean, I’ve always wanted to get in there and . . .

GUILTEE: Actually, that’s why I was calling.

GUILTER: (Surprised) It is?

GUILTEE: Yep. I have an entire BOX full of things you’ve given me over the years that I’ve decided I don’t need.

GUILTER: (offended) Really? Hmmph.

GUILTEE: Yes, like all those games you gave me when you cleaned out your closet?

GUILTER: Mmm-hmm.

GUILTEE: We haven’t EVER even played them! And that old-timey-looking shoe-shining-thingy? I’ve never really had a place to put it, I haven’t shined a shoe in years, and I’ve tripped over it ten times in the last year! (hahahaha)

GUILTER: I just thought it was cool. And that you might like it.

GUILTEE: Oh I did. I did! I LOVED that thing! But you know me! Always thinking things are cool but then they just turn into clutter!!

GUILTER: well, I guess I understand.

GUILTEE: So should I bring that stuff over? Or should I donate it? It is going to help me SOOO much to get this house under control to get the clutter out!!

GUILTER: I guess you can donate it. I mean, if you really don’t like it anymore.

GUILTEE: Thank you SOOO much! I can’t tell you how much I appreciate your help!!!


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