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10 + 10 + 10 = 30 Minutes And A Big Difference

I’m a big proponent of what I call “Just 10 Minutes”. I use the concept to make myself do something I don’t want to do by promising myself that I only have to do it for just 10 minutes and then I can stop. Often that 10 minutes is all I need to finish the job and when it’s not, I am usually far enough along that I want to finish what I’ve started.

Some projects, though, take more than 10 minutes and such was the case with the reorganization of the corner cabinet in my kitchen. Last Christmas I spilled an entire box of frilled toothpicks in there and it’s been downhill ever since. I finally made up my mind to get it done last Sunday and I coerced Dale into helping me so that I didn’t have to climb up and down on the stepladder too many times.

This is the before picture. There is a mess of glasses, dishes and cookware I don’t use anymore, toothpicks everywhere, and just general clutter.

We emptied everything out, set aside the things we wanted and tossed the things we no longer used. We decided on what was going back into the cabinet and what was going to be stored elsewhere. We wiped down the shelves and put things back neatly.

This is the after picture. I realize it doesn’t even look all that different but it sure is. We’ve got beer glasses on the top shelf where Dale can reach them, wine and martini glasses on the middle shelf where I can reach them, and measuring cups and cookware on the bottom shelf where everyone can reach them. My head feels lighter now that this is done and I’m ready for the entertaining season.

It took more than 10 minutes, of course, but it was worth it.

This Post Has 18 Comments

  1. Funny how much gets postpone while the weather is lovely in spring, summer, & fall. Perfect time to get the entertaining equipment organized and ready!

  2. When the mood strikes again come to my house….I have an entire pantry in the “before” condition.

  3. It’s surprising how cleaning up a cupboard can make one feel so good! I’ll be over after work for a martini! πŸ™‚
    We have been cleaning up cupboards and pantries and giving the extra dishes to the women’s shelters. They can always use them or give them to women moving into their own homes.

  4. I did the same thing yesterday with one of our messy cupboards…it felt good to have it organized and clean. πŸ™‚

  5. It does look much better. And I love the 10-minute idea.

    I did my pantry closet not all that long ago (within the past year), but it definitely needs it again. I don’t know what happened.

  6. You can definitely see a difference! Doesn’t it feel better?

    I have an entire house in the “before” stage. I am taking it bit by bit. The toughest part – getting my pack rat husband to throw crap out! It makes me insane.

  7. We have so much organizing and decluttering to do ahead of the construction. This is definitely a good way to approach it. I think I can get us all to dedicate 10 minutes a few times a week. I hope.

  8. Doesn’t it feel great to tackle a job like that!!! I bet you keep walking past the cabinet . . . and then opening it up to look inside at the lovely order . . . over and over and over! That 10 minute trick really does work — because it’s usually just the STARTING that’s the hard part. Great job!

  9. The 10 minute concept is terrific–I need to try it. And, the cabinet does look entirely different. One small thing that bothers me…you said you tossed things you no longer use. I hope you tossed them into an ARC or Goodwill or some other good cause’s box. Thanks again for the great idea about getting it done! Jo

  10. I should keep the 10 minute idea in mind when I have pretty much any irritating task to do. I use Chore Wars, but I’m not the best about recording what I’ve done (so, right now my husband is winning).

  11. I love the 10 minute idea…and the thought of what the after picture is going to look like. is it just me, or were you seeing this blog post in your mind and was it pushing you for those last 15 minutes??!

  12. I use the “15-minute” chore rule as well, and it works! I make myself do a chore I hate for “just 15 minutes” and then usually I reward myself by knitting for the same amount of time, or playing a game of solitaire on my phone, etc. It definitely makes the work easier to start. Great job on the cabinet … although now it just kinda looks like the booze area. Just sayin’.

  13. We used to use a similar system to de-clutter the house when the boys were young. Work for 20 minutes (set the oven timer, which was so loud and piercing you could hear it in Massachusetts), then do anything we wanted for 10 minutes, rinse and repeat. It was the only thing that really worked for Smokey and #2 Son, both of whom have ADD. #1 Son, after the second 20 minute session asked plaintively if he could just go ahead and finish — he’s the only one in the family with good concentration.

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