About eighteen months ago I held a garage sale and stated I would never hold another one because I wasn't going to accumulate clutter in the future. Last weekend we swapped three rooms around and in the course of emptying out the rooms I did spring cleaning (yes, I know it's autumn) and some decluttering. I was amazed at how much stuff I have that I don't want to store anymore. How could this be when I went through the house before my last garage sale?
I packed clothes into bags for the thrift shop and put other items aside for the garage sale a friend and I plan to hold as a joint effort. I don't have enough stuff for a garage sale on my own but there is enough to add to my friend's sale.
There are some things I wasn't ready to part with previously but now I know I won't need them. It is time to say, 'Goodbye'.
One of my biggest dilemmas is the vast amount of paperwork I collect. I have been holding on to some of the research done for essays. Yes, I did purge some a while ago but I had stored other printed articles, just in case. Now I realise that stuff is out of date and so I have parted with it and feel pleased with the decision.
Once I had sorted through the stuff we were shuffling from one room to another, I then looked at the kitchen and realised there are items I haven't used once in the past eighteen months. Some are things I used at one time but not now. I probably don't need them any more.
An example is that slicer/dicer/chopper gizmo I bought about 4 years ago. For a while I did make good use of it. Then I sliced my thumb and since then haven't used it. It tends to jam up the drawer and so I am considering dicing it, pun intended.
I do love a bit of op shop retail therapy and have bought a few kitchen items. The purchases 'seemed like a good idea at the time.' Sometimes a cooking dish or other item turns out to be so useful and I am glad I bought it. At other times it isn't the right size after all.
I feel guilty about buying something and then not using it. However, it would be better to give someone else the opportunity to make use of it rather than have it taking up space in my house.
Deciding what to part with and what to keep can be difficult. I am getting better at it with practice. I ask myself
Am I keeping the item out of habit?
Would I notice the item was missing if someone removed it without my knowledge?
Have I used it in the last year?
Do I love it?
If I did need it in the future would it be difficult to replace?
Do I know someone who would make use of it?
Would the extra space make me feel calmer?
Would I make better use of my time if I had less stuff?
I do love having space in my cupboards, drawers and wardrobe so things aren't piled up or jammed in. On the other hand I don't enjoy rummaging through piles of stuff I will probably rarely (or never) use. My war against personal clutter continues.
I am glad you have been encouraged by my article sharing my personal experience of dealing with clutter. By the way I threw away a vase today. It is really pretty but rather top heavy. It tipped over when I put a book away on the book shelf it was on top of. Water went everywhere and it took me a time to dry shelves and books. I decided not to donate it to a thrift store as another person is likely to have the same problem.