Breakthrough Solutions

for Attention Deficit Disorder Adults

Bonnie Mincu

Senior Certified ADHD Coach

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How paralysis of indecision leads to clutter

ADHD Clutter and IndecisionHow many times have you started plowing through a pile of clutter, only to find yourself bogged down over decisions to be made on every piece of paper or item?

  • Do I need this?
  • Do I already have another one?
  • Where should I put it?
  • How will I remember I have it?
  • How will I know where to find it again?

And what about that old rule to “only touch everything once?”  If you're only allowed to touch it once, that means you have to make the right decision the first time.   Which just compounds the agony.

No wonder you don't have the patience to get through clutter.  Once it reaches the point of being visually overwhelming, you are not only faced with the question of where to start, but you also know it will take forever just to get through a pile!

Since I am admittedly a serial clutterer, one of the first training products I created was an ADD-friendly process for getting through clutter.   I developed it by listening to the tendencies of my readers and ADHD coaching clients, and designing strategies that dealt with those tendencies.


Here are MY rules for developing a clutter-clearing strategy.

The process had to:

1.  Not be boring

2.  Be fast-paced and do-able in short bursts

3.  Show an obvious and visible improvement right away

4.  Keep you from drifting away and doing something else

5.  Cut out the possibility of overwhelm

Most importantly, in order to satisfy all of those requirements, it had to

6.  Eliminate almost all of the need for decision-making while you work.

I wrote an e-book guide, “Clear Clutter Now in 6 Simple Steps,” that lays out the whole process in detail.  But reading is a solitary activity, and focusing on getting through your stuff is usually easier with someone else there.  That's one of those weird phenomenons of ADD-ADHD, our need for a “body double” to stay on task.

“Clear Clutter” became my most popular online program!

Last year, I decided to lay out the strategy of the Clear Clutter Guide in a live “WORK IT” online program that provided that final benefit — having it feel like someone else was clearing the clutter with you.  To my surprise, it turned out to be the most popular event I've had in 13 years!

So I am now giving it again, this THURSDAY, August 7, 2014.

Clear Clutter FAST – WORK IT Session
Thursday, August 7 – 9:00 PM Eastern time

Special Sale Price – $19

ADHD Adult Clear Clutter eventLive interactive webinar, Q&A, chance to WORK the strategy on your own clutter as you learn it, and complete notes.  Plus, the webinar recording will be available to you to listen to in future clutter-clearing sessions.

This is one of the few training programs online where multi-tasking is actually encouraged!    I'll be your body-double while you work, as I answer your questions in real time.

Come prepared to work on any kind of clutter, from messy desk papers to cleaning out the garage.   Click here for details and to register for the program.

What kind of clutter do you need to tackle most urgently right now?

Please SHARE and COMMENT below!

Author: Bonnie Mincu
Senior Certified ADHD Coach, Founder of "Thrive with ADD," Bonnie has been coaching adults with ADD / ADHD traits since 2001. She has developed numerous training programs to help with the challenges of Adult Attention Deficit Disorder.


    Bob D

    Fortunately, the only room in my house that is impossible is my home office.

    Unfortunately, the room in my house that is impossible is my home office! It’s a combination of papers, books and computers that need to be repaired/returned to people. I reduced my desk from a large to very small one hoping it would help control the mess. Unfortunately, it showed me how high I can really stack junk on my desk. You shouldn’t have to move the pile to see the bottom of the screen.

    Guess I better take advantage of the program!

    Wait–we’re not including basements in the list of clutter, are we? 🙁

    Basements count, but the basement probably consists of multiple clutter zones. Think of just a small area at a time. So your goal for one session would be to clear a shelf or a corner rather than the whole basement.

    Your office sounds like “good news / bad news.” The desk would be a great place to focus on during the Clear Clutter FAST event. But you might want to clear the space in front of the screen first so you can see the webinar!

    I’d love to post BEFORE & AFTER photos of your office.

    Barbara W

    The first difficult decision is answering your question: what clutter do I most need to tackle? In my shared apartment, only the shared kitchen stays neat and orderly. Everything has its place, so it’s easy to wash the dishes and put them back. My living room and bedroom are both disaster areas. The bed in one and a chair in the other are the only clear oases. If I had to choose one place to tackle, it would be the sofa, which is currently piled high with papers and music. I’ve been looking for music storage ideas. Seems like the best suggestion is lateral file cabinets for the sheet music (currently in boxes) and shelf space for the larger collections. But investing in file cabinets would also mean parting with other furniture, another painful decision. And on it goes.

    The sofa sounds like a good idea. How lovely it will be when you actually can SIT on it! You might want to make a “no matter what” rule once it’s clear: That nothing goes on the sofa, ever, no matter what.

    Bob D

    That was quite a workshop! My desk thanks you!

    Patricia Hutton

    To Barbara W. Consider replacing your nightstands or end tables with furniture that has a file drawer in the bottom half. I use 2 small file cabinets in my sewing room to hold up my cutting table as well as patterns and other sewing items I need but don’t want out all the time, OR if you have bookshelves, try magazine cases. They are in all price ranges, easy to label, and can look very nice. Don’t give up. You could be describing my house. Its better now but I still have a ways to go. Hang in there.

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Bonnie, there are no words to express how deeply I’ve been affected by your blog! I’ve only read a few things, but they have created such a complete mind shift that the tears shed have washed away my struggles forever!

For the first time in my life I feel understood and hopeful that I can put some tools and systems in place to help me overcome!”

—Michelle near Seattle

Clear Clutter Now


Find out what's REALLY stopping you with free "Procrastination Tree" Tool for Adult ADD / ADHD.