This is marketing at its best – making items like sticky notes, paper clips, and pens “sexy”. 

And it’s just everywhere I look in stores.  I see well thought out notebooks, color plates created from pins, clips and staples and productivity planners.  Even someone that has gone 100% paperless will find purpose for these tiny tools.

You even see the trends of gifting stationary and office supplies as a great gift for any age. 

If in doubt, just grab a journal and a pen, wrap it all up with an old map and you have the perfect gift for a wanderlust; wrap it in the comic section from last Sunday’s paper and you have a great gift for kids.  The options are endless but so is the clutter trail when it comes to excess in this category.

I did rant a bit, so let’s get back to the point.  Somewhere along the line this all becomes clutter.  Typically, when your drawers and bookcases start to resemble an office stock room.  It’s these moments you realize all the beautiful organizational tools hold no purpose in your life.  If you don’t journal be ok with that.  Allow this an opportunity to find new purpose for all the journals you’ve now collected or have been gifted.

The best way to address any problem is starting off by acknowledging you have an office supplies addiction. Next detoxify and lastly create structure around what is and is not acceptable going forward. Take a moment and learn a little about yourself and your habits in this area.

Ask yourself questions like – why do you keep buying these items and what is this really “feeding”? stress? boredom? or has marketing taken over each time you step into Target?

Once you have a better idea of the “why” look to reduce your stock.  

During the detoxifying step, looks to donate these tools to local schools and/or after school programs. There are plenty of places that will love and get real use out of your office supply treasures.  When you have less, you are more likely to use the items you have, this is my goal for all my clients. Simplifying to allow them to use the items the own and love.

Quick Tips:

1. Take Inventory, find all your journals, pens and organizing tools
2. Understand why you keep acquiring these tools
3. Detox, find ways to donate the items that don’t have a purpose … which allows you to use the items that do!

Sarah Parisi – The Clutter Curator
Chicago’s Premier Home Organizer