It is the nightmare reality of housework and office cleanup—the beast-towers of stuff that grow until they topple, spreading the seed of new towers that then repeat the process.  The outcome is a post-apocalyptic cityscape of stuff.

Occasionally, circumstances require a restoration—time invested in trashing, filing and replacement.  Habit #7 is to be implemented immediately after a restoration.

Remember: a habit is an automatic implementation of a behavior (or set of behaviors) in response to a stimulus.  It is what you do when given a cue.  You don’t have to think about it; it just happens.  Previous habit blogs focus on the concept of habitsHabit #1: Expressing LoveHabit #2: Questions before AnswersHabit #3: Sleep to LiveHabit #4: Single-Tasking, Habit #5: Double-Checking and Habit #6: Be Nice and Blame Mom.

Habit #7 is the 30-Second Rule.

The concept is simple.  If a task can be accomplished in 30-seconds or less, do it now.  Throwing away junk mail, filing a document, adding something to a to-do list, shredding a paper.  They all qualify.

C’mon!  It’s only 30 seconds!  Do it now!

The same principle applies to the dishes in the sink, and the shoes and coats littering the landscape of your house.  Hanging up a coat, taking shoes or laundry to your room—they qualify!  This can be a great application for accountability.  Remember, the vast majority of the time, there is no excuse not to do it.  It is only 30 seconds!  Repeat after me:

“C’mon!  It’s only 30 seconds!  Do it now!”

Thinking in 30-Second time blocks removes many mental obstacles.  The vast majority of the time, there is no excuse not to carry out the 30-Second Rule.

Let this truth echo in your mind as you defend the reclaimed desk space or cabinet top.

“C’mon!  It’s only 30 seconds!  Do it now”

Let this become a statement that rings in your mind.  Listen to it.  And then repeat it until you become the voice in the mind of your spouse or your kids.

It is time to declare war on the clutter.  And our battle cry is:

“C’mon!  It’s only 30 seconds!  Do it now!”