Simplicity is not depriving yourself but creating a space for living.
Simplicity seems like a easy thing to do right? Until you begin to trying to achieve it. I thank many of us want to live a life of simplicity but maybe are lost how to get there. Maybe you are looking around wondering where to even begin. Maybe you have a plan but time is your hindrance. I think it is easy to get to those points but we are going to get through this. I admit it is hard letting go of things. However they are just that things. These things take time to keep dusted, they take time to clean and they take up space for living. I am not talking about completely letting everything go and moving to a small space. OH NO I love my stuff don't get me wrong but I do not want my stuff to own me. So maybe you are sitting here reading this and feel the same way and want to join me on this journey... then please do. I am going to write out my process... my thoughts and how I do this.
Typically I do a clean out every 6 months that corresponds to a local consignment sale. If you have kids and want to make some extra cash then maybe seek out local consignment sales in your area. They all have different requirements on what has to be done. There is a ton of place to sale your things online and even brick and mortar locations in your area. So keep that in mind as you begin sorting. I like to create two piles one to sale and one to donate.
Now to get started.
**Do not try to just going through one room without a plan especially if this is something you have not done in a while. There is nothing worse than getting started and loosing hope.
First you have to have a general idea of what your goals are. For me its to purge as much as possible, get ready for a consignment sale, possible gather stuff to rent a booth in a local pickers brick and mortar store and to clean out the old craft room. The old craft room is bad. It has become a dumping ground for everything.
Now that you have a purpose you need to sit down and mentally think what order will best suit you. For me I still had Christmas stuff up. During the beginning of the season I had 14 totes of Christmas decorations, that is a lot! That took me about 2-3 days to decorate including the trees. That is not counting the stuff I do at my mother in laws. I felt like this past Christmas I was spending too much time preparing for it that I did not live in it and I wanted that to change! As I took down my Christmas I decided that 6 totes was enough. Those 6 totes do not include ornaments. Each of the big trees have their own totes of ornaments ans well as each child has their own tote of decor/ornament combo. That means we would keep 6 totes of decor for the house, 2 totes of ornaments for the living room/den tree and 2 totes for each kid for a total of 10 totes from the 18 we had. That is still a lot I know but again this doesn't have to be dramatic. A lot of my decor is still in their original boxes in the totes which takes up space. We also have a lot of vintage pieces that require extra padding. However that meant tough choices had to be made and things had to go.
There are a few questions you need to ask yourself:
1. Do I LOVE it? - you have to be honest with yourself. Love is a strong word, I am talking about love like "Do I see this being in my home and being put up in 5 years? Passed down?
2. Does it have an emotional pull at my heart? I know as a parent its hard to let go of every cute thing your kid makes but the reality is that it is the memory that we need and not the object. If you are having a hard time letting go of artwork or creations then take a photo of them. Save them to a file on your computer to look back on. The reality is you will not pull that actual piece out in 5 years, it will get lost and damaged so preserve the memory not the object.
3. Do you use it? I was not using all my decorations. There was things that I hadn't put out in years so why was I hanging onto them. Why allow them to take up space, to be moved that is just extra work I was creating for myself and taking time away from living...
4. Is it broken/missing parts? Seems simple right, yea this is a hard one especially for my children.
So asking myself those questions it either went into a keep, sale or donate box. It was hard I am not going to lie but I know next year when I get out those 6 totes of decor and can get it everything decorated in a day it will be worth it! That will allow for more memories of crafts and fun time spent with what matters my family.
Next week I began tackling the rest of the house...