Friday, 1 June 2012

The Great Purge

A recent move forced me to acknowledge just how much stuff I actually own. I finally realized that for every one of my possessions, there was an associated cost. The cost was not just the money I paid for the item. It was also the space I was giving up to store it, and the time required to clean or maintain it. I needed to pare down. As someone who is quite frugal by nature, getting rid of things that are ‘perfectly good’ is difficult. However, moving to a small apartment in a new city was just the impetus I needed. The purging began. My new golden rule became: If it is neither useful nor beautiful, it’s gone.

Target areas of The Great Purge:
1)      Wardrobe
a.       Forgotten items
b.      Ugly items
c.       Ill-fitting items
d.      Too much of the same thing items
         i.      New strategy: Make an itemized list of the clothing in my wardrobe (ie. 8 button-up shirts, ect.) and set upper limits as to what is reasonable. Beyond that limit, an old item has to be removed before a new item can be added.

2)      Fridge/Freezer
a.       Unlabeled, clearly old frozen leftovers
b.      Anything freezer burnt
             i.      New strategy: label things as they go into the freezer. Keep a running list on the freezer door to reduce waste.

3)      Collectibles
a.       Sentimental value collections
             i.      New strategy: keep my favourite to represent the collection, get rid of the rest.
        ii.    Do not start any new collections under any circumstances unless the collectibles also serve a practical purpose.

4)      Books
a.       Textbooks
             i.      New strategy: Sell or donate any textbook not used in the last two years.
b.      Reading books
            i.      New strategy: Try to borrow books from the library as much as possible. Be honest with myself about the likelihood of rereading a book. Give away books I am unlikely to read again.

What are your areas of clutter concern, and how do you best manage them?

1 comment:

  1. I too find it hard to get rid of things, and I totally agree about the hidden cost of things.

    Every time I get rid of things, I feel lighter, but the process to get rid of things is so hard though!