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Employee Engagement Effects

De-stress By Decluttering

I’ve just had a brilliant idea – instead of reducing clutter (taking hours of spring cleaning), say no to ‘stuff’ before it becomes clutter. Clutter breeds more clutter, so de-stress by decluttering. 

This message support’s both the global warming movement and reducing the  ‘stress’ we experience as a direct result of having too much clutter in our lives. According to the Australia Institute research “Stuff Happens”, 88% of Australians have at least one room full of trash stashed, and it is making us stressed just thinking about it.

Somehow the RedBalloon ‘funky’ office space has turned into a storage house. What once looked like productive chaos now seems like we are bursting at the seams and cannot cope. This weekend we are about to have a massive spring clean.

And his is bothering more than just me, apparently: 84% of people feel stressed by the clutter in their lives.

I’m in the fortunate position of having a fellow RedBallooner who is a professionally trained organiser (and she sits across from me). At first, I found this rather daunting – like having a personified conscience – until I realised that she was not judging everything that I brought to my desk – in fact she was looking for ways to support me in this never ending habit.

She advised me: Never deal with something twice (or more than that) – and when you bring something into your environment determine its purpose. Have three piles

Start by having three piles:

  1. Action now (use it or file it in its permanent place)
  2. Action by end of month
  3. Action never (so bin now)

On point 2 – ‘Action by end of month’ – if you haven’t used it by the end of the month then process the pile straight to option three (the bin).

It simply is a waste of mental energy which has the opportunity cost of not allowing me to focus on the bigger game – the plan and delivering on the strategy.

So exactly which pile do I put the ‘Jumbo collapsible toy horn’ in? It seemed funny at the time. But it’s just a piece of plastic that now clutters my desk. Note to self ‘deal with it – and fast’ and  ‘keep clutter out’ – I’m sure my campaign will catch on.

Note to self: ‘deal with it – and fast’, and ‘keep clutter out’. I’m sure my campaign will catch on. For more steps on decluttering, see here.

Reader Interactions


  1. I agree with you completely, after seeing some places you realise how cluttered yours in get stressed when you are expecting people round!

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  • Friday drinks must be here soon surely ... or I'm out! #friyay
  • In the 90s I left my cushy job at Apple.

I’d be a squillionaire if I still had my stock options.

I don’t regret it. Here's why:

After 10 years of corporate, I wanted to ‘do my own thing’. I started with freelance marketing.

My strategy? Hard work and build strong brands.

It seemed to work - new clients came from referrals.

But after 18 months, I came to a realisation:

All my clients wanted was “more customers”, not complex branding plans.

SO I thought I’d build a brand of my own. Something to get them “more customers”. RedBalloon was born. The purpose? Give people amazing experiences.

16 years on, RB has delivered 3.8 million customers to 2000 small businesses.

Now, when I give talks, I always get the same question: “How did you build such a strong brand?” Funny how it comes full circle.

I can’t answer that with a time limit.

Though I think I found a way - an online course. “How to Build your Business Brand” - years of experience in one place (link in bio if interested). But, that’s not the point of this post.

If I stayed with Apple I’d be unbelievably wealthy.

Quitting was still the best thing I’ve ever done.

So if you want to take a leap of faith, do it.

All I ask you is this:

Trust yourself and never underestimate the power of brand.
  • #tbt the originals circa 2004 🎈 it reminds that an entrepreneurs journey is long and full of twists and turns. What a ride! @redballoonexperiences
  • I have always been rushing! I need to remind myself of this one regularity. I'm intentional, not frenetic. Choose the one thing that needs to get done to make everything easier! #inspiration
  • If you caught @sharktankau tonight I might have mentioned #gettinglucky @luckybuddhabeer 😂 🍺 @ten_insider @beer.pal


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