Saturday, October 31, 2015

Day 31: Clear It All OUT!

Read the previous entry in this series:  Day 30: Your Choice. My Choice? The Basement. Finally! or start at the beginning with the Introduction: 5 Ways Clutter Costs.

Do you feel good?

You should. Whether you decluttered for three days or thirty, getting crap out of your house is an accomplishment in this "buy more, get more-more-more" consumer-driven culture we live in.

I was standing in line waiting to purchase a mirror for my mom's dressing room today when I overheard a woman behind me tell the woman she was with that she had a thing for bowls. Sets of bowls, to be precise. She had all sorts of them--and she couldn't get rid of them, not even one, not even when all the others in the set were broken. She shrugged as if to say, "I have no power, here."

And that's why I am so passionate about decluttering. It really isn't about the stuff, or how much stuff--it's all about choosing--it's all about intention. You get to choose what comes into your life. You have a say about how many bowls you have in your house. You do have the power. You are not a victim of your stuff.

And I exerted my power over a lot of stuff today!

Missing: big black printer--it's already in the trunk.

Value Village: 2 black garbage bags and a box
Eco Centre: (where we take hazardous waste, appliances, electronics,etc) the contents of the green box and my big black printer (not shown)
H&M: (to donate to their fibre recycling program) One large shopping bag and the H&M bag.
Re-Use Centre: (Hard to describe, basically a place for items difficult for Value Village to sell (like cut fabric) but still reusable). One grocery bag.
Animal Shelter: One box plus an old pillow.
Lowe's: An on-line shopping return. Shouldn't really count it--but that box was huge!

I have read that trying to find the perfect place for your clutter can be a trap--it's 1) a symptom of your perfectionism, 2) an excuse to hang on to something (because you have to find the perfect home for it), and 3) a really good example of the power stuff has over you.

If you are new to decluttering--don't worry about where the stuff is going. Let that go, too. Back in the early days when I started decluttering, (2002, I scrapbooked it) I could not spare a single thought as to where anything should go. I picked one place--Value Village--and that was that. One decision, one destination, one drive. Done and done.

The Donation Station all cleared out and ready for more stuff!

I hope you enjoyed this month. It's been quite the challenge! Thank you all so much for commenting and encouraging me as we went along.

Going forward, I am going to commit to at least two 15 minute sessions of decluttering per week down in that dratted basement--even though it is going to get very cold down there very fast. I will post about my progress on Fridays.

Is there a place in your home that could use more decluttering?

(Oh and let me know--would an e-book based on this 31 day series of decluttering be at all useful?)

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Marian said...

Congratulations, Alana, on completing your 31 day project (and posting for 31 days) --- that's quite a feat! Your house must feel so much lighter now that that huge pile of stuff is gone - that's always such a great feeling :) .

The woman you overheard (with the bowls) reminds me so much of my MIL ... buy buy buy just because, but never let anything go. My in-laws have recently moved, and although they were "supposed" to downsize, they really didn't, or at least not sufficiently. They are struggling with too much stuff for a space that would be plenty big enough for a FAMILY, and yet there is only the two of them. It's been really hard to watch (from afar; they're in the same city you are, and we're in ON); I feel for them, because they clearly have such "issues" with stuff, and yet it's so hard not to be impatient with them at the same time!

Alana in Canada said...

Thanks, Marian. Watching others struggle is difficult. I know all about that impatience, too.

One of the great things about decluttering for days on end is that the kids get into it. My son cleaned out a few drawers and got rid of some books from his bookshelves and my daughter let go of some clothes and other stuff,too, during this past month.

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