Wednesday, February 24, 2010

WFMW - decluttering

I'm not the first, nor will I be the last who is trying to de-clutter their houses, their lives. Right? So, I thought I'd write today about how I'm going about that... and maybe it'll help someone else along the way. :) Please go to We Are That Family for more great WFMW ideas.

1. Go through your mind and think about the stuff you use every single day. Ok, now... that stuff is untouchable.

2. Now, think about the stuff you use occasionally. Why do you use it? Out of need or guilt? And by guilt, I mean... do you use that item just because someone gave it to you, but it's not really something you love? Let's see an example for me... my panini maker. Now, I wanted one really bad. But the one I was gifted isn't quite what I wanted. But I used it anyway, on occasion. The question is... do I keep this one just because someone (my Dad, in this case) gave it to me? Hmmm... must think about that.

But that's the point. In the de-cluttering exercise for me, it is crucial to figure out why and how I think about the items around me. And then determine if I really need that item. Maybe it should be replaced? Or not.

3. Think about the stuff you put "away" for the next season. You know, those clothes you put up for summer or winter? Before you just grab that box (if you ever do), make a mental note to yourself to pick out at least 5 things that can go away. Because, seriously, you're going to probably buy 5 things this season, aren't you? Of course you are. :)

4. Think about the stuff that you haven't looked at in some box somewhere for at least one year. Is it mail? SHRED it. Is it "stuff" you're holding onto? Why?

Reasons for me are - baby clothes. I want to keep some baby clothes for Lil M just to have for her later. And some others I want to keep "just in case" I can adopt/have a second child. Part of my de-cluttering process this spring will be to go through ALL of those clothes and pick out what can stay and what must go. I don't need a ton of that stuff. I think I will pare it down to one box of keepsake stuff for her and one box of "just in case". Trust me. This will be paring down. :)

What about the other stuff you've kept "just in case"? Tools, old sheets, old baskets... old crap. Go through that crap and just start tossing. Really. You don't need this stuff. It's the most expendible of all the areas, right? And, it's been said many, many times... if you haven't used it in a year, get rid of it. Pare it down to a box. Not three. Not ten.

Now. My problem is my sewing room stuff. The sewing room has been dismantled so I could foster T. I have bins and bins and bins (no joke) of fabric and quilting items. I should go through this one more time (already have once and gave at least two big boxes to goodwill)... but, for me, I am not quite ready to do this.

So, sometimes you need to get your head around what you can do, and leave the rest for the next round of de-cluttering. There is no sense in having an all-or-nothing attitude when it comes to this, or you might just not even start. It's better to get rid of some, than to not even begin.

I'm sure you have some other ideas?? Share, please!



Aiming4Simple said...

Thanks for sharing your process of de-cluttering. I need to start down this path too and overcome the inertia.

Erin said...

Good pointers! I wish I had some decluttering advice, but I'm really bad at it (which I why I really needed your pointers, lol!) Thank you for sharing!

Demeter said...

Great post! I love de-cluttering. But sometimes it is hard to get rid of things... However, when getting rid of some things we feel lifted, relieved, lighter, that we have lesser ties to tangible things, so we can move on and experience life differently. But I agree with you. There are some baby items you want to keep, some photos, etc..