9's and 10's

About a year into our 5 Things A Day habit, Greg was discussing the experiment with our friend Annelene. She had some great insights, as usual, but one idea stuck with him and soon became our motto: 9’s and 10’s. It was to rate items on a scale of 1 to 10, with 10 being a ‘must have’ or as I like to say ‘oh my goodness, yes!’ and everything below being a ‘nice to have’ or even ‘no’. 

(lovely graphic from  designlovefest )

(lovely graphic from designlovefest)

When we declutter our lives, we keep the 9’s and 10’s and release the rest. We had a series of questions to ask ourselves around each object, like: does it add value, does it bring us joy, do we use it often, does it fit our current lifestyle and who we want to be? But this new motto is a super quick device that makes the decision process even easier!

It’s an amazing feeling to only own the most useful and favorite 20% of our stuff. It reminds me of the 80/20 rule, the Pareto principle (80% of the effects come from 20% of the causes)… especially in regards to our closets: we've all heard that most people only wear about 20% of their clothes regularly.

When I work with clients, there are still a number of questions appropriate for sentimental items or paperwork but for most things, a simple motto can be all they need. I teach 9’s and 10’s from day one.