Book Excerpt: The Clutter Diet by Lorie Marrero

Below please find an excerpt of The Clutter Diet written by Lorie Marrero, a Certified Professional Organizer (CPO) and creator of Learn more about The Clutter Diet strategies and how to order The Clutter Diet book (or win one from Buttoned Up!).

Practice Clutter “Portion Control”

In the weight loss world, one of the best tricks to lose weight is to pay attention to portion control. Is a serving really half a cup, but you’re eating a whole cup? You can cut your calorie intake drastically by paying attention to portions. Clutter calories are no different! If you come home from the store with less, you have less clutter to deal with later. Remember when shopping that people make their life’s work figuring out how to sell to you, and they are very clever. Here are some of the purchasing traps that make you buy more than you intended:

    The “one in every color” trap.

    If you like this in white, wouldn’t you also love to have it in brown? You might as well get it while you’re here, right? Think carefully and make sure you are not being impulsive.

    The “collect them all!” trap.

    Kids are particularly vulnerable to this ploy, with action figures and trading cards. But many adults are also prone to “collectibles” like figurines and ornaments. Make sure they are something you’ll really enjoy and use and that you’re not just buying something for the sake of having the whole set. Certainly there are times when a complete set of something is more valuable than a few pieces, like fine china. But asking the Clutter Prevention questions available on our site with our Clutter Prevention Wallet Reminder Sleeves should help.

    The “free gift with purchase” trap.

    We see this trap most often from cosmetics counters. Many of the free bonus makeup items are in odd colors that never get used, and the small skin care items are often forgotten in a drawer. If you are buying it primarily for the fabulous zippered bag, consider if your money would be better spent just buying a similar bag instead! Or do you even need that? We have seen clients with a pile of those free gift bags that go unused. Remember that the free gift is often tied to a minimum purchase price too, which means you may buy more than you planned to get yourself above the minimum.

    The “bigger is better” trap.

    Warehouse clubs bundle six cans of pineapple slices with plastic shrink wrap, so if you just needed one can you are now buying all six, and you are rationalizing that they won’t go bad. Just because it’s packaged that way doesn’t mean it’s a good idea, particularly if you have a small family. Buy bigger bundles only if you have room to store the items and if they are not perishable.

    The “free shipping” trap.

    You learn that if you buy only a few more dollars’ worth of purchases online you are eligible for free shipping, and you quickly start searching around for something else to buy. Is this really valid logic? Only if you think of something else you truly needed and intended to buy.

    The “it’s on sale” trap.

    Remember that even if something’s on sale, if you shouldn’t buy it in the first place, it doesn’t matter.

Lorie Marrero is a CPO and creator of For more information about, click here; to order your copy, click here. Buttoned Up will be giving away three signed copies of the book so stay tuned!