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Saturday, September 13, 2014

Decluttering - Where to Begin

Deciding to live more simply takes courage.
Letting go of things we've kept for so many years "just in case" feels like yanking the rug out from under us, for some. It makes us totter for a moment. And then, like magic, you realize you are still alive and happy WITHOUT that dastardly thing.

But where do you start?
Here is a list to consider:

  • Duplicates.  Do you have two irons? Two sets of measuring cups? Two pairs of flip flops? Two coffee makers "just in case" one breaks? Two rhinestone necklaces?  Get rid of one!
  • Broken things.  Keeping cracked or broken things in your house is just plain bad feng shui! It attracts cracked and broken energy. You know that pair of glasses you've been meaning to fix? Or that coffee cup that you made in 3rd grade with the handle broken off? Or the blender you keep meaning to replace the container on? If there's no motivation to fix it, if you REALLY aren't inspired to fix it today, then let it go.
  • DVD and CD jewel cases. Buy yourself a binder that holds discs and get rid of all that plastic!  Better yet, put all that music on your desktop computer and get rid of the discs!
  • Things that multiply. Pens, cups, chopsticks, plastic giveaways of mustard, mayonnaise, tupperware containers, paper bags. Keep two pens, a cup for each family member, 6 tupperward containers, and shovel the rest.
  • Clothes. Sort through your closet. Take out each item and ask, "Have I worn this in a year?" If no, it goes.  "Do I absolutely ADORE this?" If no, it goes.  "Does it fit?"  If no, it goes.  Keeping clothing because we've gained or lost weight and "may" get back to the point where we can wear the item just causes clutter in our closet. Do you have 3 green shirts? Get rid of 2. Do you have 4 pair of black jeans? Consider giving up two pair. 
  • Shoes. My mother has about 30 pair of shoes. Some are still in the boxes and have never been worn. I think this is because she grew up during the Dustbowl and never had new shoes. But it's crazy. In Oregon, you need 1 pair of sandals, 1 pair of walking or sports shoes, 1 pair of snow boots, 1 pair of rain shoes, 1 pair of house slippers. That's being generous. Let the rest go.
  • Office supplies.  Just how often do you use paperclips these days? When was the last time you reached for a rubber band? Or a bulldog clip? Keep a dozen of each and get rid of the rest.
  • Books. I know, I know… people love their books. But how many books can you read each day? Go through your books. If you have no intention of reading the book this year, let it go.  If it's a favorite, put it aside. Then, look each one up on Amazon Kindle. If it's free, nab it, and donate the paper copy to the library. 
  •  Toys. Go through your child's toys. Choose to keep the ones you have actually seen them play with this month. Put all of the rest into a "limbo" box with the date on it. If they haven't asked for the toy by the end of one month, donate them all.
  • Kitchen drawers. How many potato peelers do you have? How many sharp knives? When was the last time you used that melon baller? Consider letting these unused items go.
These are just ideas.
But you get the picture.

* * *
Have you started the Minimalist Challenge Yet?
It will help you prepare for life on the Camino.
No.. really!
Living for two months out of a backpack can be interesting.

I'm on Day 3, and today I had to weed out 3 items.
Today I let go of a really NICE leather binder, 
a necklace that belonged to my grandmother, 
and an inlaid wooden box. 

Well, that's another day.

Until then, remember...

1 comment:

  1. This sampler reminded me of something my mother always said: Tell me what you need and I'll tell you how to live without it!


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