I often get asked '..but what did you do with all your stuff..?' Before I started House Sitting I had so much 'stuff'. Letting go of it all was a process, but oh my, it was so liberating. It was rather daunting at the time...I had a house..and 52yrs of 'stuff' to sort through. Where does one start? How DO you decide what to keep and what to throw away? Eventually I managed to reduce my life belongings to 12 boxes. Yep, that's right TWELVE boxes...eventually. It was like peeling the layers off an onion - resulting in tears and frustration...but I did it.
WHAT ARE 4 THINGS YOU NEED TO HELP YOU DECLUTTER?
Actually, it is one thing. You just need 4 of them. Four large boxes. Then you label them:
The 4 questions I kept asking to help de-clutter:
It all sounds rather simplistic, but that was my process and each week it got easier. I became more brutal in my decisions whether to keep items, and each time it became more liberating and freeing. We build up such an emotional attachment to things that don't really serve us, they pull us down and we drag them to each home we live in...often putting items up in the loft that we never unpack or see the light of day. Leaving a legacy of 'stuff' for our children to sort through after we die. Why do we do that? Really?
What items did I keep?
In a nutshell, I kept items like:
Items that were related to my children, like their school books and stuffed toy collections etc, I simply boxed up and gave to my children to sort out. What I valued, maybe they didn't, so I let them make the decisions on what to keep or not. It also took the stress out of whether I was throwing away something of sentimental value that I would later regret.
I remember one weekend, I put a load of 'stuff' from the garage and shed, that was no longer valuable to myself, but maybe to others, on my front lawn. Then I put a photograph of them on a community Facebook page and said 'FREE to a good home' - (insert a cartoon of vultures here...but hey..they came...they took...job done..)
By the end of the process, I had a small 4'x3' storage container that was choker full and which I paid a weekly fee to keep safe and secure. But by the end of the first year, and money being tight, I later went back to the container and realised that at least half of it I didn't need. It was costing me money. So I took a weekend off...phoned up my friends to give them first pickings...and donated the rest to charity. I could have sold it...but by that time, I was so over 'stuff' that I just wanted someone to take it off my hands and I saw it as 'gifting' to someone who's need of it was greater than mine. And that my dear friends...is how I ended up with 12 boxes...and beautiful friends who kindly store them in their garages. They know who they are and I am so very grateful for them helping me.
HOW ABOUT YOU? WHAT HAVE YOU DONE TO GET RID OF STUFF?