How many times have you seemingly lost an item only to later find it in a pile of clutter afterwards? You’re not alone, the average household has over 300,000 items in it?
I am a very organized individual, but I remember someone once saying to me, that just because all of my containers were organized it didn’t mean that I wasn’t hoarding things. I remember the feeling of horror that ran through my thoughts.
Although, perhaps it was true; I know I’m not the only person who holds onto things just in case I might need it in the future, or keeps an item because it has sentimental value or because an item holds a certain memory.
What am I really going to do with all of this stuff? And, do I have the room to keep it all?
The first thing to do is let go of the attachment we have to these material possessions. There are a few questions that can help with this process. Does this thing add value to my life? Does this item bring purpose or joy to my life?
In my most recent move, I tried to take action with this philosophy. For my entire adult life, with each move, I literally had approximately 20 storage totes labeled memories.
Each tote contained everything from the varsity letter I received in high school, to the notes my classmates and I passed. I had to remind myself that memories aren’t in things, they are in us. The process was difficult, but I took photos of the items that could be thrown away and kept photo albums and yearbooks. I was able to condense the 20 totes to five.
Now that I’m living in a smaller space, I continue to find ways to declutter and pare down things I don’t need. The key is to have fun with it.
Challenge yourself to games with your decluttering process.
Filling one trash bag per day of items to donate to the Goodwill.
Trying the Oprah Winfrey Closet Hanger Experiment. Identify wardrobe pieces to clear out, hang all your clothes with the hangers in the reverse direction. After you wear an item, return it to the closet with the hanger facing the correct direction. After six months, you’ll have a clear picture of which clothes you can easily discard.
Take the 12-12-12 Challenge
A simple task of locating 12 items to throw away, 12 items to donate, and 12 items to be returned to their proper home. This number really could be anything, we just picked 12.
The Four-Box Method. As we first set out on our journey to minimalism, this was the technique most often used in our home. As I set out to declutter an area, I brought four boxes: trash, give away, keep, or relocate.
In addition, I often challenge myself to smaller projects throughout the day. If a task will take less than 5-minutes, I stay focused and complete the task.
For instance, if I go to the grocery store and upon return start putting groceries away and notice the refrigerator is filled with opened containers or left-overs that have been in there for a while, I clean it out. Or, when I’m placing the pantry items away, I take a few minutes and check expiration dates. Simple tasks like these done often enough save from big tasks taking over.
I think you will find your decluttered home to be less stressful, calmer and tidier. If you decide to move before or after decluttering that home of yours, be sure to give us a call. We can help you to navigate your down payment assistance options with no hassle!
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