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The Power of One Thing

Updated: May 24, 2023

The One Thing Happy Life Recipe

To walk into a room, step past feeling overwhelmed and choose ONE THING to do RIGHT NOW can be absolutely transformative. And it's not as scary as it might sound.

When people reach out to me for help with decluttering and organizing, they often begin with, "I feel so overwhelmed!" and "I don't know where to start!"

And when I'm with a client-friend and we walk into a room full of who-knows-what, or we open a closet door and a mish-mash pops out...

I, too, feel overwhelmed and don't know where to start!

Just because I'm an organizer doesn't mean I don't get overwhelmed by stuff or that I have all the answers immediately in my brain. The biggest difference between myself and the person whose life is covered in clutter? I choose not to throw up my hands and walk away - I walk straight into the overwhelm.

This is a teenager I worked with. She did this herself! If she can, so can you.

Choose One Thing: Change Your Life

To cut through feeling overwhelmed and overcome the urge to turn around and walk straight to a bag of Doritos and a binge on Facebook (the struggle is real, right?!), I take a deep breath (literally) and let my eyes wander until they find one simple thing I can do.

Then I do it.

Just the act of choosing to do one thing and accomplishing it gives me a feeling like, "Ok, I can do this!"

Then I do one more thing.

And often I find myself "in the flow," as they say - moving from one thing to the next without worry and without the nasty chatter. You know, the chatter that says things like...

You don't know what you're doing!

That's going to be too hard!

I don't know how to do that!

There's probably an important message you should go read!

And before I know it, a whole area is clear.

Of course I've been studying and practicing organizing techniques for years and I REALLY like puzzles (which is all decluttering and organizing is - a giant puzzle), but it ALL starts with JUST DO ONE THING. And do it now.

The One Thing Happy Life Recipe

Choosing One Thing is really a very simple recipe for a good, happy life.


  • 5 TB Desire for change

  • 5 TB Vision of a different future

  • 10 TB Commitment to a Future Self

  • 10 TB Perseverance


Choose to walk toward the struggle

Find one thing you can do to make a positive change

Do it

Celebrate that did it

Do another thing if you can

Celebrate that you did it

Then do another thing if you can

etc., etc., etc....

It's really that simple. Our thoughts are usually what make it seem complicated.

Depression as a Teacher

I realized I learned about doing One Thing to change my life as a teenager struggling with severe depression, anxiety and alcohol.

Even when I felt like dying, like stealing a bottle of alcohol and drinking the entire thing (which I did a a few times), all I had to do to save my own life was do choose to do one thing: call someone or go to an AA meeting.

Thankfully, I chose to take those two simple steps enough times that I am still alive today.

And since then, I have learned MANY One Things I can do from moment to moment to not only stay alive, but thrive.

Choose One Thing, Do It Now

I invite you step on into your feelings of being overwhelmed, walk into that room, open that closet door, open that junk drawer, and just do one thing. Right now. Don't give yourself time to talk yourself out of it.

Then celebrate!

And maybe tell me about it on the TidyWild Facebook group page, send me an email or leave a comment about how this went for you :)



Please remember that I'm here for you! Reach out if you have questions and/or you feel stuck.

There's no need to struggle with clutter anymore - you're not alone and I can help you feel better right away.

For inspiration and organizing tips in your in-box, join my e-newsletter, Sunbeams. Inspiration only, no spam, I promise :)

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