Problem Solving

  1. Identify Problem
  2. Review the attempts that haven't worked before
  3. Brainstorm fresh ideas
  4. Narrow it down to one idea
  5. Be consistant, give it a good effort
  6. If it doesn't resolve the problem, go back to step #1


Every relationship has conflict
  1. Fight (inflexible, unwilling to change)
  2. Flight (pretending the problem doesn't exist
  3. Assertiveness (addressing conflict in a productive, non-threatening way)

Edit, Edit, Edit

  • Sort by creating 3 piles/bins(Keep, Undecided, Pass On/Trash). Get rid of "Pass on/ trash" items immediately. Decide how much space you want to devote to each category of items, then fill with "Keep" items. Go back to "Undecided" and see if there is space.
  • Forgive yourself for unwise purchases and don't hold the items hostage, hoping they will make sense after another 6 years. Let them go and get on with your life.
  • Let go of clothes you have outgrown, are the wrong size, color, or style, along with items that will shock or burden the next generation.
  • Pack up 75% of your kids' toys, and do an exchange every month, so they have "new" toys to play with.
  • Notice how your kids play when they're not overwhelmed by too many choices.
  • Take all the stuff out of your desk drawers and put it in boxes nearby. Put things back in the drawers as you use them. Consider discarding or donating items that are still in the boxes after a month. This can also be done with toys, but the kids should ask for the items and not retrieve them themselves.
  • Remove one knick knack per week from each display area. Store them to rotate with the seasons or donate. You'll get used to how simple things look, even after a week.
  • Create a paper system with three categories: Action, Reference, and Toss. Create subcategories for Action; Pending, Do Later, and Do Now.
  • Editing gets easier with repetition.


  • Small amounts of space and time add up to power & progress or confusion & frustration.
  • Don't buy something the first time you see it. Give yourself a 3-day waiting period.
  • Clean out your car while you pump gas.
  • Bring something with you to put away when you leave a room.
  • Put things away during commercials.
  • Gather the items that need repair or work (such as mending or pictures to be framed). Use painters blue tape and a marker to write an expiration date on each item. Schedule time to do the needed repairs and if you haven't followed through by the expiration date, donate the items.
  • Call the toll free number listed inside your catalogs to remove your name from their mailing lists. To take yourself off junk mail lists, visit to, or Cancel magazine subscriptions if you are 3 issues behind in reading.
  • Think small, stack and digitize. Use electronic scrapbooks and bulletin boards for memory storage.
  • Are you giving away more of yourself and resources than your household can afford? When you say "yes" to something, what are you saying "no" to?
             Remodeling and Home Design