By now you've started, or have finished, taking down your holiday decor. You've stored it away for another year. But what about the other areas in your house that need a little attention?
Did you make a New Year's resolution to...
de-clutter the ______________________________________
to finally organize the _______________________________
to clean out the ____________________________________
to ultimately decide what to do with __________________
While we’re constantly bombarded with messages of “More!” and “Buy now!” we’re also offered the tantalizing promise “You’ll be happier with less!” Gretchen Rubin
I talk a lot about replacing negative clutter with positive organization. But sometimes achieving a level of simplicity is not as easy as it seems. It can get especially complicated when you have to let go of things you hold dear. Those of you who have merged households, or have family members who have downsized know exactly what I'm talking about.
When we began to de-clutter our home last January, I found several things that were precious to me: baby clothes, grandmother's quilt, precious gifts from years gone by, my first baby doll. What I concluded was that we NEED to hold on to those things that are sentimental to us.
Finding a balance between what to keep and what to get rid of is often a difficult task. Although you may not know what to do with everything you find, there are actions you can take that will help you decide what to do with your beloved belongings.
- Pack them away. If you encounter an item that is especially sentimental, pack it away. There is nothing wrong with storing a few things that you hold dear. Don't feel pressured to get rid of everything when you're downsizing or cleaning out the attic. Remember that some things are meant to be kept.
- Capture the moment. One of the reasons we hold on to documents is because we want the information that on them. Often times we feel the same way about belongings. Many times it’s not the object but the memory that the item conjures up for us that we wish to save. Writing down your memories and feelings in a paper journal may be all you need. You can also consider creating a digital scrapbook or start a blog to capture all your memories. This way, you’re still honoring the objects without having to keep them.
- Pick the best. As you try to decide what to keep, select the things that mean the most to you or that are in the best condition. Then, put them in a spot in your home or office that you can easily see them. If these items don't suite the decor of your home, consider investing in a cedar chest or lined wooden box. You still keep the items you hold dear, but you don't keep the clutter associated with them.
- Let go of the guilt. I have found there is often guilt associated on both sides of the organizing scale. Those who get rid of items often feel guilt for doing so. But so do those who decide to keep them. Once you've determined to either keep an item or get rid of it, don't feel badly about it. Make the best decision you can make, and then be okay with it.
Hoping you find peace in your organizing endeavors,
Only By His Grace,