Do you feel like your life is spinning out of control? Are your thoughts jumbled because you are surrounded with clutter? I have struggled with this my whole life. ‘Things’ have been my friends and my refuge, so naturally I ran into issues with messes of ‘things’ everywhere…Growing up as an only child was not lonely or depressing as some of you might think based on my previous sentence. We lived slightly rural so I played by myself with my ‘things’ and was a perfectly content little girl. Mud castles, rock climbing, biking and more; these things brought me happiness, so naturally I began to associate happiness with ‘things’.
The more sales I could find and the more ‘things’ I could accumulate meant that I was “happy”. But much to my chagrin, the ‘things’ started catching up with me and causing stressful and cluttered thoughts. If you are surrounded by clutter, your thoughts will be cluttered – if your thoughts are cluttered your life will be stressful and chaotic.
My husband and I are attempting to reclaim some sense of what we know to be healthy for us. We want to Do More and Have Less (the link here is a bit more extreme, but you get the picture). To us this means getting rid of non-essential physical items; duplicates, excess, unnecessary and unused items. I like big stores such as Costco just as much as the next person, but there are some things that do not need to be bought in bulk (e.g. cold medicine in the size for a small tribe!)
We also cut down on media – of any form – to help our minds out. Constant input of social electronics, TV, streaming or what have you is very toxic to mental health even if you don’t feel that way. What works for us is not having cable television, but instead just having internet. I know I know, Netflix and Hulu and the like, right? We keep it very minimized now. In the past both my husband and I spent much more time outside, but like so many couples before us and so many to come after, fell into a downhill routine of mind numbing jobs and lack of motivation to do things good for the soul. So if there’s one thing this gal can recommend, it’s cutting down that media dribble into your brain!
In our last move we really tried to pare things down before the actual move itself. We went through every box, drawer, cubby and bag we owned to see what was hiding. We found $22 and more stuff than imaginable that we didn’t need. We threw out 3 trash bags of paper, which did not include the paper items that need to be shredded for our identities’ safety. Four boxes of items were donated to the Good Will and countless items were sold through Facebook online garage sale sites. Even after the move we are still finding things we do not need.
During this time frame we just scratched out on paper what we thought we could get rid of and what we thought we would gain by doing that. If we back track for a second, remember how I said things were my best friends? Yep. I have a really hard time letting go of items that have even the slightest memory attached to them. This Do More, Have Less mentality helped me see what I could gain by getting rid of items rather than what I was losing. Our goals were chicken scratch on scrap paper, so now that the move is over and we’ve settled down I decided to make a nice sheet to share with you, my dear readers. This simple printable can help you visualize what you don’t need, and what you will gain.
This process can be in baby steps. If that means you need to toss out every plastic cup you have saved from vacation in order to make room for a nice set of glassware, then that is what needs to be done.
Do More: Have guests over and be able to use the nice new glasses.
Have Less: Cluttered cabinets, overflows of plastic cups, and a visual mess of neon.
It could even be a little bit bigger, i.e. getting rid of all those little kitchen gadgets that one KitchenAid Mixer could replace. Sell those gadgets on Craigslist or Facebook garage sales and put the proceeds towards a KitchenAid.
Do More: You have more time without looking for bits and pieces and maybe you will bake that 3 tiered birthday cake this year.
Have Less: Less clutter, less to move, and less to take up space in the kitchen now. I think you get the picture.
I hope this helps you find peace and get rid of unnecessary items, and help with detaching yourself from ‘Things’! Download this sheet and simplify your life today!