It’s truly a wake-up call when you realize that your stuff truly does own you instead of the other way around.
For me, it was looking at piles of stuff in my house and feeling stressed about three things:
- How did I let this pile of clothing, books and junk happen?
- Why was I putting off cleaning it up?
- I can’t have anyone over because I’ll never get the house clean in time.
Instead of my home being a calming and relaxing place for us to live, it was just a giant storage bin for all of our possessions of the past, present and future. After some extensive reading on de-cluttering and minimal living, I decided to start tackling the problems one area at a time.
The biggest source of my clutter frustration was our hallway. It housed an old stereo, a record player, several hundred cds, a sewing machine, an old laptop, an ancient video camera, boxes of photos, loose power and USB cords, and some additional junk. All of this lived in a space of about 5′ x 2′, and it was only getting worse.
I dedicated two whole days to getting this area straight. The first step was the hardest: admitting that I had let this area get this way, and deciding that cleaning it was the only way to move forward.
I separated items into three piles: keep, donate/sell, and trash. This is a proven method for clearing out things fast because you have to make quick decisions. It is advised that you do not make a “maybe” pile/box. If you really need to have such a box, put your items in and then seal the box. If you don’t open the box in six months, you can probably get rid of it without much grief.
Getting started may be hard, but once you get moving and the clutter leaves your house it is liberating. Your mind isn’t obsessed with cleaning and straightening up; you are free to do whatever you want
Today may be the day to ask yourself if you own “stuff” or if stuff owns you.