Monday, 11 January 2016
It seems to me that we spent our early years accumulating things – things we didn’t have as kids and wanted as adults. As our spending power increased, so did the ability to buy things, and hence, a lifestyle of accumulation. This accumulation is not only an accumulation of things, but also an accumulation of debt.
Some people are frugal and simple in their lifestyle approach – inherently or through hard effort. Others like things, and add them to their collections. In doing that, they may sell or discard or donate what they have now replaced. We aren’t like that. As a result, we have thousands of books – novels, textbooks, magazines. We also have tools, an old childhood piano, boxes of art supplies, furniture, and who knows what else.
There is also a practical side to keeping certain things – we do return to them, eventually. Hobby supplies are not something easily or cheaply replaced, and so it makes sense to keep them. But do we really need out-of-date textbooks or the piano? Not really. We have a three-car garage we cannot park a single car in.
The joke is that if we cannot find something, it will be found somewhere – in a bag or a box. The problem is, we have no idea what box, what bag!
It is time to begin to empty things out. Throw things away. Give things away.
And we did that yesterday. The key was to limit the amount of time we spent on the task – we agreed to no more than 60 minutes. By limiting the time, a lot can be done, but it also keeps us from becoming compulsive about it, moving into crazy-compulsive-gotta-keep-cleaning-out mode. We will return to the task next weekend. And we still have time to enjoy our weekend.
The other half, being male, does not have quite the accumulation of clothes that I have. He went through his closet and in the garbage went a lot, and in the Goodwill bags went a lot more. He finished his drawers and his closet. One hanger rack is empty, and the closet floor is visible
On the other hand, I only made it through the dresser drawers. Underwear got sorted out, and about a third went into the garbage. The rest of the drawers were viciously purged, and a ton went to Goodwill. The result is that I have 2 empty drawers. I haven’t done my closet yet – I am saving that for next weekend.
The final result? Our garbage can is 3/4 full of clothes we don’t deem “wearable” by ourselves any longer, nor wearable by anyone else. Those still wearable were put into the Goodwill bags where we dropped off 3 huge bags this morning.
Hooray! It sure felt good!