Teaching simple to Cat

I never really taught my daughter, Cat, how to clean and organize. For some strange reason that I haven't figured out yet, I much prefer cleaning when I'm at home alone. So it's not like she's seen me in action all that much. And when it came to her room, at a young age she decided that she didn't want me in there helping her out. So all I could really do was tell her "go clean your room" without much more direction than that.

Cat has her challenges when it comes to staying organized, which I think have something to do with her ADHD. And let's not forget that she's a teenager. AND, like I said, I've never really taught her how.

I was really happy when she finally let me help her to prepare for the move. I thought this would be a good time to teach her everything I've learned on minimalism over the past months. I knew I had to stay calm no matter what I'd find in her room, otherwise she'd get upset and I'd be kicked out.

I went in and sat on her bed. Cat stood in the middle of her room. We looked at each other, looked around the room, then looked at each other again. Where do we begin?! I took a deep breath and just started with the top left corner of her room and we went through the first bookcase as if we were reading a book. One shelf at a time. One item at a time. Left to right. Deciding what to do with every single item right away and doing it - trash, donate, pack.

I was pleasantly surprised that no matter what I saw in her room, it didn't really bother me that much. In the past, I would have totally lectured her on the state of her room. But this time around, it was all about getting it done. I'm also surprised at how efficient we were. I think that one of the best ways to realize how much you know is when you teach someone else. It actually felt easier to purge her items than it was to purge mine. I suppose it makes sense - her things are her things. They don't bring up as many emotions for me (except maybe a little frustration for the wasted money and damaged items that were barely ever used).

Hopefully, this lesson will stick with her. I would love to spare her from having to go through what I went through. So much wasted money, time, and energy on a lot of stuff.


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