For many months, I’ve been doing a lot of thinking about clutter (mental and physical “clutter,” but today’s post is about the latter).
Specifically, how I have too much of it and that it’s suffocating me.
I’m the worst procrastinator and packrat (thanks, parents!), so you can only imagine how those 2 traits have created a tangled web of indecision and too much stuff.
Since we started paying for daycare, I’ve been trying to limit my random spending. Apart from a few consignment store pieces for work or random clearance rack sale finds I couldn’t pass up, I haven’t been buying much for myself or for our home.
But even though I’m doing well about not bringing things in, I haven’t done much to kick things out. Until now.
I recently read this great post from Melissa, and it inspired me to make my own BIG changes.
Oh, yes. Instead of lazily “committing” to limiting my frivolous purchases or cleaning out my closet(s…and attic…and under-the-beds…etc.), I’m beginning a 4 month FAST and PURGE—of my belongings!
Why 4 months? Well, because I’m ready to start now—October (yeah, I’m a couple days late, and we did go shopping today, mostly for baby clothes & new boots, both of which were needed)—and my birthday month is February. I feel like treating myself (probably to something small—a new outfit?) at the end of this endeavor will be well-earned and will not take away from my ultimate purpose, which is tri-fold:
- To give (both my belongings and my time)
- To live (in the moment—which will be much easier with less worry and time spent on cleaning and organizing THINGS)
- To save (because babies are freaking expensive!)
So, how exactly am I going to accomplish this? I’ve come up with several ways.
1) No random shopping for 4 months. This excludes, of course, toiletries that have run out, groceries, necessary clothes/shoes/etc. for Baby M (since he will be growing!), and such. But other than that, I will NOT buy random clothes, accessories, snack items, extra lotions, new makeup (except to replace what I wear daily), etc. just because they’re on sale or look cute.
This also excludes occasional date nights. Mark and I have been neglecting ourselves while caring for Baby M. I recently decided that we’d start doing a tri-weekly date night (or day), so while most of these we will keep on the simple/cheap side, it does mean we will occasionally spend extra money on ourselves.
2) I am going to donate, sell, or trash clothes (and shoes) that I haven’t worn in over a year. Some of my pre-pregnancy clothes just don’t appeal to me (I still have love handles, y’all), and my “style” has changed. I always say I’m going to pare down my wardrobe, but then I find something(s) and think “oh, I’ll wear this!” and place it back on the hanger, only to ignore it 6 more months. Well, no more! I’m not going to make a true capsule wardrobe, but I will be clearing out a lot.
3) Books. We have a huge shelf full of them—as well as many boxes in the attic. I’m a lover of books. We’ve saved most of our college textbooks, which is downright silly. The thought of throwing out (well, donating) hundreds of dollars of written word is gut-wrenching, but it’s high time I get rid of books that I have no intention of reading.
4) I’m going to go through the stupid boxes of GARBAGE that I’ve held on to since college, with hopes of making a scrap book. I hate scrapbooking. I’m talentless in that area, so why? I have gazillions of photos, so why on earth do I need programs, ticket stubs, door decorations, etc. from 10 years ago? Simple, I don’t. And they’re going in the trash.
5) Similarly, I’m going to go through each room in our house (including bathrooms and kitchen!) and get rid of ONE box of stuff. Some boxes may be small, but it’s the point of de-cluttering every room. Whether it’s knickknacks I no longer like, half-burned candles, old magazines, near-empty bottles of lotion, etc.—it’s gone.
6) I’m going to look into creating digital records for some of the things we’ve held on to—manuals and other papers. Then I will trash the ones we don’t need.
I think this covers it. All of this may seem like a no-brainer, but you have to understand that I have an emotional attachment to things from the past. I also detest waste. Thus, throwing something away just because something bigger and better replaced it pains me. Naturally, I’ll donate when possible, but I have to accept that a vast majority of old worn-out things can’t be salvaged.
I’ll try to check in a few times until February to hold myself accountable.
Alright. Let’s do this!
- Are you a packrat?
- Have you heard of a capsule wardrobe—and is it something you’d ever try?
- What is something you need to downsize or get rid of?