It was 8 months ago that I started selling of all my stuff. After collecting all the memorabilia from raising 6 sons, the school books, special little clothes I loved, special little gifts they’d bought me, so many clothes I have barely worn, shoes that I may wear…sometime, old shoes and clothes that would be handy…sometime in the future, stuff my kids might like later, tins of paint (?), old videos, furniture that was given to me that I never wanted but didn’t want to say “no”, so many sheets! and towels! and the list goes on and on.
Even though I had had several garage sales over the last several years I still had a lot of stuff that it was time to move not someone else or just get rid of.
So..how do you choose what to get rid of?
It’s important to know what you really need and what is just being held for emotional reasons and if you are like me that was a lot of things.
Getting rid of the Kids stuff was the hardest, so I went through everything that was written and made by them and culled the empty and maths books (usually the same thing), the odd drawings that belonged to a nameless child – I bundled all these up with their school reports and certificates for being good…and I gave them back. There was no condition put on this, if they choose to throw it out that’s fine.
You have to be brutal in your decisions and also remember that when it gong…it’s gone – no turning back. Once you make that decision to sell your favourite bed that you planned on keeping for your whole life, a top quality futon with a beautiful Tasmanian oak base to a guy who says he will “use it well”…its sold, gone, the dreams you have from now on will not be on that bed, but somewhere else entirely. The comfort that bed brought to you at night knowing it would always be superbly comfortable is gone.
When it comes down to it. Whats more important, a dream of comfort, an attachment to the idea of something or…
the reality that your life sucks and it’s time to do something drastic to change it.
The best way to start minimising is to:
- Get rid of the stuff you really don’t need, the old TV, electrical equipment that’s broken or no longer up to date, kitchen stuff, food from the pantry you haven’t needed in years, clear out all the drawers in the house and don’t just sort the content into new neat piles – THROW most of it OUT!
- Give away the clothes you haven’t worn or don’t really like, the boots that are uncomfortable and the ones that are now too small or big. Just get rod of them, there’s no need to keep stuff just because you might grow back into it one day.
- Go through your garage and clear it out, not just clean it out. The old tins of paint, the rollers that are still full of paint, the tools that are rusty and broken. Just chuck them or give to someone who can fix them.
- Do you really need all that camping gear? How many tents with no poles can you use?
- ANYTHING that brings a “just in case” thought to your head – put it in a pile – be really brutal in your decision – and ask yourself “just in case WHAT?”. Be real
- Don’t act on what others will say to you throwing stuff out, if someone else might want it or if it’s ‘too good’ to remove it from your life.
- Books…..say no more, how many books have I accumulated over the years?! So many. And I am a “read a book once” type of person. Just think how much you have spent on those books, amazing. A car load to the second hand shop (no one would buy them at the garage sale)
- Sheets and towels are expensive, but how many do you need? Do the cull, keep what you need and remember you have a washing machine, so 2 towels per person is fine.
- Cleaning stuff – decant the double ups of cleaning liquid into one container and throw the cleaning equipment and products you haven’t used for years.
- containers, containers, containers. Figure which ones you’ll use again and throw the rest.
- Photos from the time of instamatic cameras with no zoom, hopeless, out of focus and can’t even remember where or when they were taken. Chuck them.
- the list is almost endless – but you will get there.
Don’t make the mistake of thinking that now you have GOT RID of stuff, you now need to buy MORE stuff to make the LESS stuff LOOK better……………That’s how this whole mess started.
NOW, you are ready to do something different, the lightness that throwing stiff out is energising. It’s amazing how much dead energy is held in our bodies and minds by the stuff we hold on to over the years.
Have you managed to minimise? – I’d love to hear your story. Comment box is below.