UPDATED: Mar 26, 2020
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Is it in our genes to accumulate stuff we don’t need? Did our caveman ancestors collect a pile of junk in the corner of their mud huts? Perhaps it’s just human nature to hang onto random objects, just in case, we may need them someday.
Manage the Clutter
Stop to think about the clutter you may have in your home. If someone were to go through your house and collect a box full of random items without you knowing, how long would it be before you realized these things were gone? Would you even realize they were gone at all?
My parents recently retired and were faced with the challenge of selling their house and moving all of their belongings. This is no small task if you’ve been collecting odds and ends for the past 30 years! They advised me not to make the same mistake they made, accumulating useless gadgets and random clutter.
Organize Your Space
Now is the perfect time to organize and make space for all the holiday stuff you will soon get! And it’s so mentally cleansing to declutter your home. It can seem overwhelming at first, but these steps will help you on your way to a cleaner home and a clear mind.
- Tackle one room at a time, doing a little bit each day to avoid burning yourself out.
- Create separate boxes labeled as ‘sell,’ ‘donate’ and ‘throw away.’
- If you haven’t used the item in the past year, you most likely never will.
- Keep sentimental items and family heirlooms.
- Set up a box for “maybe” items. After being in this box for a few months, you should be able to decide if you really want to keep the items.
- Be aware of new purchases. Will the item eventually just become more “useless clutter?”
- Sell the chosen items at a garage sale, or on eBay, Craigslist, etc.
- Donate what you can to the Red Cross, Goodwill or similar non-profit. You can also post your donations on Freecycle.
Whatever you do, don’t waste the money you earn selling your clutter on more clutter! Research has shown that experiences make people happier than physical items do. So spend your newfound money on vacation! Or better yet, use your earnings to purchase piece of mind with a new term life insurance policy!