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One of the things Our Saviour, Master Fard Muhammad, to Whom praise is due forever, promised us upon our submission to Him is A GOOD HOME. He Wants Us To Live In A GOOD HOME and the best way to ensure our home is a GOOD HOME is to keep it clean. It may not be spacious but it can and should be comfortable and, most importantly, clean.
In The Nation of Islam’s Muslim Girls’ Training and General Civilization Class (M. G. T. & G. C. C.), we are taught that the first step in cleaning and maintaining a clean home is to GET RID OF CLUTTER.
PROPER STEPS TO GET RID OF CLUTTER
* A good house keeper knows when it is time to throw a thing out.
* Keeping unnecessary items (old papers and magazines, clothes no one wears, old letters, cards, books, bills, toys, dishes, shoes etc.) causes clutter.
* If items must be kept, they should be kept neatly and put away.
* Each item should have a specific practical place. For example, toys can be kept in a toybox in the play area.
* Some things may need several homes: pencil holders should be placed in the kitchen, in the office, near the computer and near the phone.
* Wicker baskets are great “homes” for things. They can hold magazines in the den, pine cones in the bedroom, or combs, brushes and hair accessories in the bathroom. They are also decorative, look good in almost any home decor, and keep things very close to where they will be used.
* The more convenient it is to put something away, the less likely it is to end up as clutter.
* Teaching children (or other family members) to put things away can be accomplished by consistent modeling and insistence. Organizational skills can be taught in stages. Start teaching them from the cradle.
* Getting rid of clutter and learning new habits can happen over night. Start by not allowing new items (clutter items) to linger in your home. Flyers, newspapers, bulletins, school newsletters, letters and bills are good examples. Though not all incoming clutter is paper-based, probably over half of it is. Once read or dealt with, anything of paper origin should be filed or put in the garbage can.
* A lot of incoming clutter hangs around the house simply because it was not dealt with as soon as it arrived.
* One piece of invaluable advice is to make it a rule to never pick up a piece of paper twice. As much as possible, paper should only end up in your hands once. Often we read things and then put them somewhere to be put away later. Later, of course, the entire thing must be sorted out of a pile of other junk, and reread. If things are dealt with immediately (or, in the case of bills, filed away immediately), they don’t become clutter.
* Another thing that adds to disorganization and clutter in the home is that many people hang onto paper clutter (and other kinds of clutter as well) because they think they may need it down the road. All clutter, as soon as it has been dealt with, or has served its purpose, should be thrown out.
Schedule a day, that you will spend removing all of the clutter in your home. Arm yourself and your children with garbage bags, and the will to clean. Take a deep breath, and throw away all of the unnecessary items. ANYTHING that is NOT ABSOLUTELY NECESSARY for your family’s well-being should be thrown out. Ask yourself, “Do I need this?” “When was the last time I used/wore/needed this?” If the answer is “No” or “I can’t remember” then that particular item is definitely fodder for the trash can or The Salvation Army.
Plan to spend all day clearing your house of CLUTTER. That way you can do the most thorough job without time restraints. The larger the home or family, the more time it will take. You may even have to schedule multiple days to complete each room but don’t quit until the job is complete. And don’t get sidetracked and waste time reminiscing and getting all sentimental. Our Beloved Messenger (May the Peace and the Blessings of Allah Forever Be Upon Him) taught us that we should not hold onto items based on sentimental value.
* Also be aware, it is going to get messy, but we have to destroy before we can rebuild.
Take breaks periodically, and celebrate your accomplishments as they come! When you finish your bedroom, go out and buy some fresh flowers to enhance the beauty of your new clutter-free boudoir. When you finish the kitchen, make some homemade ice cream and enjoy it on your new clutter-free island.
Once you have gotten rid of all of the clutter, you must now make a conscious effort to actively apply the bullet points listed above, to maintain a clutter-free environment. Once a month, go through your junk drawer in the kitchen and throw out any items no longer of use. Clean out your file cabinet of all the warranties for the items you just threw away. You should also clean out your closets with the change of seasons. And set aside time every day for dusting. Dusting requires that you put away any items out of place. Doing this daily helps prevent clutter from building up.
Pretty soon, you will develop an internal radar that will alert you to items that are out of place, and you will instinctively and immediately pick them up and put them away. This way, your house will remain clean and you will never have to do a major “Clutter Removal” again. Allah U Akbar! (Allah Is The Greatest!)