When it comes it our house…we have lots of stuff. Our kitchen is overflowing, my makeup rooms is bursting, & the closets…well let’s just not play that game.
We’ve got gadgets & gizmos aplenty. We’ve got decor & seasonal galore. You want craft supplies? I’ve got too many! Ha. Does anyone else relate to the Little Mermaid about hoarding? That scene always gives me a giggle.
Let’s talk about what’s been going on though. For those that don’t know, I am obsessive compulsive & have anxiety. I take a medication to live a much better life but I just recently started taking it again. During the break we acquired a whole lot of stuff. & now that I’m back on track it is time to tackle it. We’ve already started & I thought…just in case anyone else out there felt crazy like me…I’d share some tips that have helped me.
#1 “I never use this & someone else out there will love it.”
This is number one for a reason: I repeat this in my head over & over…& over. When I’m trying to decide on an item this is what I say. If I have to think that hard we probably don’t need it. If it is something truly sentimental (your wedding album, prom dress, your son’s first pair of shoes) then that is something you have to think about. But if you are saving 10 dresses from 15 years ago that you’ll never wear again, let someone else!
#2 Ask lots of questions, of yourself & others.
When was the last time he played with this? Where will this fit in with our lifestyle? Is there someone we know who would really appreciate this that we could gift it to? You really need to find a balance. For example, I had well over 100 pairs of sunglasses. Excessive? Yes. But I’ve had most of them for years. The average amount for most people is probably 1-10. the thought of that was enough to nearly make me cray-cray. I couldn’t go down that much! But I did narrow it down to 50. Little by little! Get rid of the things that don’t make your life better: clothes you kept because someone gifted them to you, cracked items you never bothered to fix, games with a bunch of missing pieces…make room for the new.
#3 Get nonjudgmental help.
The nonjudgmental part is REALLY important. Find someone who can understand at least somewhat about what upsets you. You don’t want to feel like they think you’re being dramatic or even making things worse. You might be surprised so talk to them before you start. Go over your triggers, what upsets you most, & what will help make the experience productive. One of my triggers is getting rid of things without me seeing it first. My husband is really considerate & vocal about it now.
#4 Give to a cause.
This helps me so much. I hate the idea of throwing out perfectly good things someone somewhere might get use out of. I just can’t bare the thought of tossing them in the trash never to be loved again. We don’t personally have a good setup for yard sales so donations really are the way to go. Books to the local library. Art supplies to local schools. Clothing to the Make A Wish Foundation drop offs. I can’t even explain the difference between donating & tossing. Right now people are getting great use out of our mismatched dishes, canned goods we’ll never eat, & clothes I never ended up wearing.
#5 Find your own pace.
Some people will speed through certain rooms while others will drag. The kitchen is really hard for me, I can always see myself using those items. Same with crafting supplies. What if I need a lavender zipper someday? Or a mini colander? Or every box of tea ever made? I’ll take longer on those things. Books were really easy for me ever since I started using audio books & my kindle. I used to save them because I would think “Someday I’ll want this for my kids” or “Someday I’ll read this again” but now the only books I tend to keep are a couple from my childhood & my cookbooks. Try to switch between the difficult & easy so you feel like you’re really accomplishing something.
Welp! That’s all for now! If you guys are interested I could talk about our spring cleaning a bit more. It has definitely been an adventure! For the first time in ages it feels good to purge our house of the unnecessary.