One of the most difficult parts of organizing is saying goodbye to items. It is easy to identify when there is too little space for too much stuff, but agonizing to decide what must go. Here are a few tips and ideas on how to determine the things you get the most enjoyment and use from, and the things that should go.
1.) If you are really undecided on some items, pack them up and put them into storage for a pre determined amount of time. I recommend no longer than a year, and for most items 3 to 6 six months will make the point. After the storage period is over ask yourself if you thought about the item, needed it or missed it. These questions will give you an indication of just how useful that item is to your life, and if it is worth the precious space it takes up.
2.) It is difficult to make decisions on items that hold sentimental value. The general rule of thumb is that you should display items that have meaning. Items with sentimental meaning provide little satisfaction sitting in a box on a shelf somewhere. When going through your sentimental items decide what you want to display. For the items that will not be displayed, think about alternatives to packing it up again. Is there a friend or family member that will display the items? For pictures and memorabilia technology can offer some great solutions. Scan images of those items and pictures into your hard drive, and then make a screen saver, so that you can enjoy them on a day to day basis.
3.) Consider donating items to charities. Sometimes parting with items is easier knowing that it will go to good use. For example, music instruments were made to make music, so shouldn’t they be in the hands of a budding musician instead on a basement shelf collecting dust?
4.) Some of that stuff may be worth a lot of money. Sticking with the music instrument theme, my husband played trumpet in high school. He bought the trumpet at a garage sale for around $50. After college the trumpet moved from closet to closet for ten years getting dinged and more tarnished every year. Then one day he decided it would better for someone to be playing the trumpet, rather than it age in his closet. He sold it on eBay because it had a new case and he thought it might be worth $50. One week later he received a check for over $1,800. He had no idea the trumpet was worth that much money and was very pleased that he could say for that month, that music paid the mortgage.
I hope these tips help you clear the clutter from your home or office. Our spaces should be enjoyed, not enslaved by our things. So decide what you have room for, and what is meaningful, and use those items to create the space you deserve.
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Labels: Home Organizing