Saturday, November 7, 2009

Decluttering Slump

This adequately illustrates the current state of my decluttering efforts

Much like my recent blogging efforts, my decluttering efforts have seriously dwindled to, um, nothing though it might not look like it since I was decluttered way more than an item a day a few weeks ago. Part of this is due to time and focusing on other things right now, and part is due to pain levels since most, but not all of the easy stuff is already gone. Note that I didn't say it's because my house is decluttered, because although there's been some improvement, it decidedly is not.

I've been trying to figure out why it's so hard for me to let go of certain items of clutter. I'm not even talking about items that have sentimental value. So what am I talking about?
  1. Wooden dish drying rack - I haven't used this in at least three years, not since I fixed my dishwasher, and yet, because there is space for it in my cabinet and I "might need it sometime," I can't manage to discard it.

  2. Gameboy - I haven't played my original gameboy in years and years. But it still works and hey, it might be worth a lot someday to some videogame nut. Regardless, I just can't let it go.

  3. The rest of my fat clothes - I've lost several sizes in the last year, but somehow I can't quite part with all my fat clothes yet. Because what if I gain the weight back? I have managed to part with the clothes that are now three sizes too big, the ones I never wore, and the ones that needed repair or were stained. That still leaves way too many though.

  4. Plastic plates - For all of those dinners outside I never have. I don't even think I've used the darn things.

  5. Books I want to get rid of, after I read them one more time - You know, just in case they suddenly became uncrappy in the last several years. Olivia Jules, I'm looking at you.

  6. Last year's IKEA catalog - I used to keep every IKEA catalog I ever received, which wasn't that many really. I've purged a couple, but still have more than one, which is silly.

  7. Those ugly dark green towels - I bought these for college, which was, I'm not telling you how many years ago. I keep hanging on to these because they are so useful: gym towels, rags, etc. Guess how many times I've used them? Yep, none.

  8. (to be continued)
This is just a sample of course, there is much more stupid crap I'm still hanging on to. So how does one overcome this?
  • Try, try again. Things change and one thing that works for me is persistence and regular decluttering efforts. I've been going through some of the same boxes of mementos for years and I've found that what seemed incredibly important a few years ago, I might be willing to let go over the next time.

  • Limit yourself. Set a limit for how many things you don't use but still want to keep that you're willing to hold on to.

  • Check for substitutes. Check and see if your local library has a copy of a book you don't love but might want to keep, or maybe a neighbor or friend will let you borrow that tool you have but hardly ever use.

  • Write about it. Seriously looking at the list above is making it sink in just how silly some of these things are. While the Gameboy is safe, Olivia is on her way out.
Obviously, I'm still struggling with this myself, so what tips do you have for me?


  1. I also have 3 things on your list. (exact same drying rack, towels and plastic plate set-including food tent cover thingies in their original 10 year old packaging).
    I have no tips for you... just keep trying. At least you've learned the lesson of not bringing more into your home, that's a big hurdle.

  2. Hi Mary, thanks for stopping by and commenting!

    I'm not sure I have totally learned the lesson about bringing new things in and of course you can't stop that entirely, but I'm trying to get rid of one old thing for everything new thing I bring home. I managed to do this on Saturday when I bought four new shirts (that fit!), I immediately found old items for the donate pile. Which reminds me, I still have one more to go.


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