Week 10 – Leisure and Hobbies

It’s Week 10 of the 2024 Clever Girl Organizing Challenge! We’re in the final 2 weeks and they’re valuable categories, so stay with us!

As for this week’s Challenge, we’re heading into those categories of STUFF that are related to our hobby and leisure time. Whether it’s about arts and crafts or sporting goods or magic tricks or whatever it is that YOU or the people in your home do (with their permission, of course!) it’s time to take a look and take stock of what role these activities and this STUFF mean in your life *today*. (PS – while this week’s language is mostly focused on OUR hobbies and activities, it’s okay to explore with other family members or family-wide hobbies, too.)

Don’t forget the guidelines I’d love for you to keep in mind before you start your work:

1) Have the tools you need before you get started — trash bags, recycling, donate box, and “goes somewhere else” box (so you can set things aside and keep going, not be tempted to return things to a different space while you’re working). This week could also use a SHRED box or bag. 

2) Keep taking those BEFORE and AFTER photos, either for your own ability to see your progress, to to share your accomplishments and encourage others in the Facebook Group. 

PS – don’t forget to review the Products and Solutions pages for some inspiration!


We’ve gone through so much of our utilitarian stuff (kitchen, bath, clothes) and our sentimental stuff (memorabilia, collections, photos) and our aesthetics (decor, artwork, knickknacks) and our administrative stuff (paperwork and home office)

It’s time to spend time decluttering the FUN!

That’s right – we’re diving into our hobby and leisure activities and the gear, supplies, materials, aspirations, and unfinished projects that go along with it. This is just a brainstormed list of what might go into this category — you know what you and the humans in your home seem to have on hand, from current activities to days-gone-by investments you’ve made:

What are some example categories that fit here: 

  • Sporting Goods
  • Exercise Equipment
  • Craft Supplies
  • Sewing/Knitting/Crocheting Supplies
  • Scrapbooking Supplies
  • Art Supplies
  • Woodworking/Hardware Tools and Supplies
  • Camping Gear
  • Electronics/Computer Building
  • Musical equipment/Sheet music/Stereo parts
  • Camera equipment
  • Gardening Supplies

We know that we can spend money in these categories. We know that these supplies and materials and equipment and gear can take up a lot of space, or require some effective systems to organize what we have.

This week, we’re diving in and really critically thinking about what has value here. What are you making space for in your life.

Did you have a hobby pre-pandemic that you still haven’t gotten back to? (Also, if you didn’t do it during the pandemic, what were you waiting for??)

Did you invest in some new hobby during the pandemic, but then got away from it, but it’s still lingering? 

Have you been saving scraps from projects that you think could someday be useful, and after many years, they never have been?

Do you have unfinished projects, someday-maybe aspirations that are taking up space in your home, but not time in your day?

Are you looking at items that are connected to the person you used to be, and struggling with the notion that you’re just not that person anymore, but somehow, you think holding onto those things makes that reality easier to swallow, or to not have to accept at all?

We’re facing them this week!


1) Clean out and Edit several categories or spaces (for instance – the spare room, the cabinets you store this stuff in, the garage, the basement, the office, etc.) – Prioritize the spaces that feel the most overwhelming and the ones you *know* deserve a real edit. Do one category at a time. Make sure you have the space to work AND the space to set aside things that aren’t going back in the same space (time for a relo?) or aren’t staying with you at all. Start one shelf at a time, one drawer at a time. Pace yourself!

2) Wipe Down or wash out surfaces as necessary – May not be such a heavy lift this week, but if you’re working in a garage, basement, attic, etc., you may be facing dust and damaged items.

3) Consider the Organization of Keepers – Where things go doesn’t have to be where things have been! Are there different ways to set up your system that better serve who you are today?

4) Create Exits for what’s going – This week might have everything – trash, donations, give to someone in particular, research selling… Whatever your #exit strategy is make it happen and get it out.


Can’t quite take on this week’s full assignment? You might not have the time, energy, or need. That’s okay! Try to set up at least two 30-minute sessions where you can focus on a critical area in this space or category. Set a timer, stay focused, and see what you can accomplish in less time than it would take to watch a sitcom! 


  • Completely review one storage SPACE where you’re keeping hobby or leisure activity equipment and materials
  • Completely review on CATEGORY of hobby or leisure activity equipment and materials


If you’re a Returning Challenger, or if your a First timer looking to go deeper: If you’re ready for a deeper exploration, think about a few different areas maybe you haven’t explored before: 


  • I don’t have a special shout out for Returning Challengers this week. You know what you’ve done in the past on this category and what you’ve avoided… in some cases, year after year. My call to you is to not blow this week over just because you’ve glanced at these categories before!


Our hobbies. Our pastimes. Our leisure activities. They already seem like a luxury in terms of how we spend our time, our energy, our money. When we invite the critical eye of determining the value that, not just the stuff, but that the ACTIVITY plays in our life, it can open up some shaky feelings.

And as a group, they take on a persona of singularity: “My art supplies”, “the kids sports stuff”, “my gardening equipment” — we see it as one big lump in our mind. The collection is often a “the whole is greater than the sum of its parts” scenario. While we think of them as one cohesive group, what’s underneath are so many individual items that build up over the years.

Many collections often begin with just one item. Often, they’re supporting a hobby, passion, or interest, and as your commitment to that grows, so can the gear or supplies that go with it. And so can the complexity of these feelings when we think about slimming down or even eliminating a collection altogether.

It’s through reflecting on those individual items gathered through those years where we can find the sticking points, the barriers that we’ll face when we challenge those items’ existence. We’ve talked about many of these concepts before, and they can show up here, for sure:

  • “Gee, I invested a lot of money in this hobby”
  • “It used to be a big part of my life, but it really isn’t any more”
  • “I used to be able to do this, but I just can’t physically do this the way I used to, and that’s hard for me to accept.”
  • “I’m hoping maybe I’ll have time to get to do this again some day – what if I get re-inspired to do this and I’m wishing I had these materials again? “
  • “Some of these items were gifts from people who wanted to support my joy”
  • “It would be so expensive to buy all of this again if I ever decided I wanted to get back to it”
  • These really remind me of important and happier times in my life… I remember loving this… “
  • “I started this with the best of intentions, and I’d hate to just abandon it, even though it was a long time ago.”
  • “These were great when I started, but I’ve really advanced my skills beyond these basics.” (sometimes followed by a clause of “these would be good to hold onto if someone I knew wanted to get into this as a beginner”)

We’ve been through versions of these week after week: Your stuff screaming with “waste!” “guilt!” “bargains!” “convenience!” “remember who you used to be!” as you wrestle with them on the way out the door.

My hope for you this week is that you’re able to listen to those barriers or these rationalizations/justifications that come up and you’re able to ask yourself:

What is the real role these items play in my life today, and in my foreseeable future? Why am I valuing these items as more important than the other things I’ve been working hard on all this time, struggling with storage space, cleaning, maintenance of spaces? What am I gaining TODAY by keeping these items?

Remember: You’re here because you made a choice to bring your head, heart, and body all in the same direction: to let go of things and have smoother systems in your home. If it was easy, you’d be done by now.

I look forward to hearing and seeing in the Facebook Group what you’re tackling and hearing more about how your perspective on what you keep, how much you keep, and where/how you keep it evolves with fresh eyes.

Happy Organizing!

Kathy (aka Clever Girl)

TUESDAY, MAR 12th – 8:00pm Eastern


Week 1 – Jan 8: Kitchen: Food – Pantry, Fridge, and Freezer
Week 2 – Jan 15: Kitchen/Dining: What we use to prep, cook, serve, eat, store & clean! 
Week 3 – Jan 22: Bath and Bed: Medicines, Toiletries, Cosmetics, Personal Items, etc. 
Week 4 – Jan 29: BREAK – take a break, catch up, or sneak ahead
Week 5 – Feb 5: Clothes, shoes, accessories
Week 6 – Feb 12: Home Office/Papers 
Week 7 – Feb 19: BREAK – take a break, catch up, or sneak ahead
Week 8 – Feb 26: Living / Family Room spaces
Week 9 – Mar 4: Memorabilia
Week 10 – Mar 11: Hobbies / Arts and Crafts / Sporting Goods 
Week 11 – Mar 18: Kid stuff / Holiday Decor / Pet stuff / Other Clutter Traps!