You know, I just LOVE going to other people homes, I really do. They always look so neat and clean, everything in its place and a place for everything. There is just a serene and calming affect that an uncluttered home has on your heart and soul. Now that being said, my home is far from calming, which is unfortunate as I greatly desire the comfort that cleanliness brings.
In our quest to down-size and live more intentionally, my husband and I have really started to take a hard look at all the “stuff” we have around us. It’s boggling to me that no matter what size house we live in (and with each move they our home has gotten larger), we always seem to be filled to capacity! Finally we got so sick of complaining about our lack of space to one another that we started asking ourselves…what exactly is all this stuff around us? When was the last time we used it? It’s hard to think of giving so much away, especially in a time when money isn’t plentiful and you may want to keep things “just in case,” as it can’t be easily replaced. Well, I guess that’s one way to look at it and that argument has it’s merit, but what price am I going to put on my sanity? Day after day I am surrounded by clutter and at times it almost seems oppressive; I just want to cry! Then one day I heard that a good measure of whether you need something or not is to ask yourself: have I used that in the past year? If your answer is “no” then you probably don’t need it.
So that’s what we are doing! We are tackling one room at a time and asking ourself the hard question…do we use this? When was the the last time we watched this movie or played this game? How many of these do we *really* need? Who do we know that could put this to better use then us, let’s ask them if they need it. Heck, just donate it!
I’m telling you, going through this process has been so cleansing and releasing, we’re talking about free therapy! We try to make 30 minutes a day to do this, slowly making our way through all the rooms, cupboards and drawers. Instead of looking around and groaning on the inside (and a lot of times quite vocally) about all the “stuff”, I now feel a greater sense of peace and accomplishment. You’ll be amazed at how much you really DON’T need, even though all those multi-million dollar ad campaigns will attempt to convince you otherwise.
So the key for us (and maybe for you too) is to simply start letting go.