2012 in 2012 Update: May

 “…I think we head into the hard stuff now. The amount of things I can easily throw away is diminishing, as we’re at a point where lots of the easy-to-spot useless crap is gone. I haven’t been a hoarder for a long, long time, so I’m going to have to start making decisions – real decisions – about things soon.”

— Me. (2012 in 2012 Update – March)

Um, no. Turns out that’s not quite right.

Interestingly, the more I clean out, simplify and declutter, the easier it gets to say goodbye to things. Even things I had been holding on to for sentimental reasons. Silly reasons. Emotional reasons.

I started with my wardrobe.

Which led me to Isla’s bedroom. Which led me to the craft cabinet. Which led me to the huge shelving unit where I keep the packaging supplies, jewellery-making equipment and materials from my now-defunct jewellery label, Trove. Which led me to an enormous breakthrough.

I haven’t used this stuff in over two years. The very sight of it, the very thought of using it makes me feel physically sick. (I burnt out in a major, major way trying to run that business.) Yet, up until now, I couldn’t bear to throw it away. Because to do that would be a failure.

I would think of all the time, effort and money that went into the business, and I couldn’t throw it away.

I told myself it didn’t bother me. Having it in our spare room was OK, because it’s better to store it for god-knows-what-reasons than to wastefully chuck it in the bin.

But, do you know what? It really was bothering me. Because those things we hold on to, that are difficult to let go of, but that we really don’t want – those things are a weight on our shoulders.

So I bit the bullet. Recycled what I could, threw away the rest and said goodbye to the guilt. I just let it go. And walking back inside afterwards, I felt lighter. Freer. Stronger.

Here is what else we cleared out from our home over May:

Items Donated or Given Away:

  • my clothes x 33
  • bags x 4
  • drink bottles (unused) x 2
  • promotional backpack x 1
  • magazines x 8 (given to local coffee shop)
  • jewellery x 6
  • jewellery making supplies x 359

Items Thrown Away (Beyond Repair or Use):

  • my clothes x 11
  • broken toys/games missing pieces x 25
  • shoes x 4
  • accessories x 2
  • magazines/seed catalogues x 6
  • random, miscellaneous crap x 21
  • packaging from my old jewellery label, Trove x 251
  • jewellery-making supplies x 132

Total = 865

Add that to the 716 already gone and we’re at a total of 1581 pieces of clutter – gone. 67% folks!

I feel lighter with every box of crap I say goodbye to. Quite literally. I feel lighter and brighter and clearer. It’s an awesome feeling.

You can follow my 2012 in 2012 Declutter Challenge progress here, as I keep ridding our home and our lives of the crap that weighs us down.

Do you own things that you don’t even want? What would it take for you say goodbye to them for good?

2 Responses to 2012 in 2012 Update: May

    • The bathroom cabinet is such a hotspot! I try to clear ours out once each season and I’m always surprised by what comes out of it. Half the time I didn’t even know it was there.