Jammed Up: How to Declutter When You're Stuck
- Maybe we get tired of moving piles so we can sit, use a table, or prepare a meal.
- Maybe we get tired of looking for stuff we need among things that we don't.
- Maybe we just feel stressed, anxious, and frustrated for reasons we can't explain.
- Stuff is our past, our family, our successes, and even our failures and what we learned from them.
- Stuff can represent what we hoped for and the lives we thought we'd lead.
- Stuff is often our security.
1. Begin with the end in mind.
2. Decide ahead of time to donate.
3. Be clear about your fears.
- What if I need this someday?
- What if it's worth something someday?
- What if my kids want it someday?
If you're accepting, saving, and storing things you might need someday, where's the line? There are limitless potential futures and a limitless number of things you may need. There is a huge possibility here of getting crowded out by your potential futures and not having the room you need to live your present.
5. Pay attention to what you bring home.
6. Use decluttering rules.
7. Use an "on hold" box.
8. Make it fun.
9. Consider your trade-offs.
For example, if you're thinking about what to do with a sewing machine that you rarely use, tell yourself, "If I keep this, I'm giving up space that I could use for a reading nook. I'll need to spend time cleaning when I could be taking a long bath. I'll need to spend $50 on supplies, which is equivalent to three hours of work."
11. Figure out what makes you feel safe.
- an emergency savings account
- a week's supply of food or water in the pantry
- knowing you can call and talk to your sister or best friend at any time
12. Remember that small steps get you where you want to go.