How To Eliminate Clutter When You Have ADHD

How To Eliminate Clutter When You Have ADHDADHD and clutter often go hand in hand. Yet clutter in your life, is very damaging. It makes focus and concentration hard, (even if you don’t think it doesn’t effect you it does!). It makes you late because you struggle to find things. It eats your time because belongings need maintenance, even if it’s a dusting once in awhile. A disorganized and cluttered environment keeps you socially isolated because you don’t want to invite people into your space. A disorganized environment makes you feel overwhelmed and anxious and there is a direct link to clutter and depression. These are all compelling reasons to attack your clutter. Yet, it’s very hard to do. It is time consuming and hard on your emotions.

I seem to be on a constant quest to find ways that help adults with ADHD declutter their life…and I have just found a new way! Declutter by numbers.

I don’t know about you, but I love numbers. I find numbers are a great way to monitor progress and success. For example, when writing my book I would religiously record how many words I had written each day. I like to see how many visitors get to my website each day. At Kung Fu, I count the number of push ups I do and when I run I like to know how many minutes I have been running. These sorts of numbers appeal to my competitive side and I try to beat myself the next time.

However, it’s only been in the couple of weeks that it occurred to me to link getting rid of clutter to numbers. Here are 2 great ways to declutter by numbers:

Gail Blanke wrote a book called ‘Throw out fifty things’. The idea is that you walk around your house and throw out or donate fifty things. What I love about this idea is that you have goal 50 things. This turns a seemingly endless task into one where there is a beginning, middle, and end.

She gets you to keep a track by having a scorecard. For example:

3 belts
1 radio
7 books

The idea isn’t actually to throw out 50 belongings rather to throw about 50 categories of belongings.

Gail’s method makes it easy to part with things and she says when you reach 50 a “wonderful momentum takes over; before you know it, the throwing out thing becomes a habit, an ongoing mindset”

The second idea is by Alison. Alison decided to declutter her life one day at a time. Every day she is throwing out one item every day so by the end of year she will be 365 items lighter. This is a great idea because 1 item every day seems very do-able and not overwhelming. Plus, my guess is some days you will want get rid of much more than 1 item. You can learn more about this project at

Whichever declutter by numbers idea you choose good luck and let me know how you get on!


Here is another declutting article you will enjoy An Organized Environment


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  1. Brian says:

    Great idea. I as well seem drawn to counting. I do for my workouts everyday. I think the ADHD mind likes to hold on to things. Later when presented with this evidence we feel foolish and usually end up overdoing it. As a kid my dad would run around the house sorta machine like cleaning …..not fun. I had wished cleaning was more “progressive” rather than “frantic”. I like this approach much better….it actually is OK to throw stuff out or box it up.

  2. Hi Jaqueline! Thank you so much for mentioning my clutter project. I have ADHD tendencies and combining this one-a-day process with forced accountability via a blog is proving very effective.

    • Jacqueline Sinfield says:

      Hi Alison, I love that you have thought of a way creative way to have accountability! Forced accountability works really well both with ADHD peeps and people with ADHD tendencies. Good luck with your project, it feels like magical things are going to happen as a result of it!!! Keep in touch


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