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Argue for your limitations and sure enough, they are yours.

Updated: Jun 8, 2020

Delldint Declutter: freeing up space for things to happen. Photo: Arisa Ishii

Delldint is amazing. She is winning.

I'm doing a home declutter and reset with her. The deal was, we would go 'all the way'. As we made the deal, she protected herself by saying 'I'm not throwing away my pot and pan collection!' I calmed her by saying 'I won't make you throw away anything you don't want to'. She trusts me, I trust her. I didn't say so, but I have full confidence that her overflowing pot-and-pan collection is a gonner. It may take a few weeks, but so long as I don't force her, I keep her trust, she will almost inevitably decide 'I no longer want them', and the pot-and-pan collection will gracefully yield way.

Delldint employed me for guidance. When I give advice she doesn't like, instead of arguing with me, she argues with herself. She argues silently. She gives it time. So far, she is winning

Here is one such conversation:

Me: 'Dell, beside the stove is for dishing up and creative cooking action under pressure. Its 'high value real-estate' space. Don't waste it, crowding it with three kinds of salt. Pick the most multi-purpose salt, and have the others a bit further away. Retire the grey plastic canister-thing. This salt goes in an open dish, for obstacle-free access. So do the matches. Dell: No! I use all three! My children gave me that box as a present!

Me: 'Okay' Dell 30 minutes later: "I've put the salt box in the op shop pile'

Dell 2 days later: The salt is in an open dish, its so much easier to pinch and sprinkle.

Dell 3 days later: 'I've found if I make the used matches into a pretty pattern, Its okay leaving them out and accessable.'

Click arrow to see 'before and after' slideshow:

Now she and her housemates have room to do essential cooking things such as put food from frypan to plates, unimpeded by the clutter of almost-empty plastic boxes. The stress and feeling of constraint that caused had become background stress, with nobody realising relief was so easy. Every human will find themselves investing time and energy arguing to defend the obstacles in their life. We all get trapped defending things that limit our movement, squat in our space, and degrade the atmostphere of our one-and-only life, giving us so little in return.

Find friends with a track record you trust, and listen to them. When they recommend you do something you've never done before, don't argue with them. It makes them tired. In the privacy of your own head, try to see it from their point of view. Hint: you won't be able to. So move position. Just do as they advise, and see how it goes. See the view from there. Let life surprise you. Let your life get bigger.

"Argue for your limitations, and sure enough, they are yours". -Richard Bach,

Author of Johnathan Livingstone Seagull


I will be presenting at Delldint's declutter action party next weekend, June 24 and 25. It will be epic, fun and delcious, as it includes a wonderful feast, possibly cooked with Dell's many, many pots and pans, or maybe just one. Its in Blackburn, and there is a small cost: basically, its a subsidised gift from Dell to people who want to spread the culture of Declutter and Reset, All The Way. If you would like to get an invite, message Dell, or myself from the 'contacts' page.

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