My “31 days to a clutter free life” RESULTS!
Well, as I’m sure you remember I’ve been going through Ruth Soukup’s book, 31 Days To A Clutter-Free Life: One Month to Clear Your Home, Mind & Schedule. Here are my results from this 31-day endeavor! I did it in less than 31 days for the sake our schedule and when we could garage sale these items, but each day is packed with simple and effective ways to slim down.
This book as hit me like a ton of bricks. I always thought I was good with clutter and not keeping things that I didn’t need. Excluding sentimental items of course. I’ve moved many many times and before each move, I always try to go through and re-evaluate the things I pack up and move to my new home.
We already had a small “to garage sale” pile in the corner of the garage, but this book made it simple and easy to dig a little deeper than the randomness that you find on your first pass through a room! Ruth’s attention to detail in this area was awesome and super helpful. My husband and I went through each room in our house and if we hadn’t used it in the last 6 months, it was in the garage sale. We went through our closets and literally got rid of half our clothing.
I think the thing that resonated the most with me, from this book, is her concept of, “just because it’s a good deal, doesn’t mean you need it.” My family calls this concept ‘going broke saving money’. Yes, there are awesome deals at Kohls! But if I don’t need or, can’t afford it, or it isn’t in the budget, then I shouldn’t be taking it home!
I noticed, much to my chagrin, that most of the clothing I put in our garage sale, was purchased while ignoring this notion.
My husband and I just had a garage sale Sunday afternoon and we had eight 6′ tables FULL of STUFF! We have good luck with garage sales because we don’t price anything, we let the customers make an offer. It’s much less work on our part. This go-round we did grab bags! Each customer could fill a grocery sack, as full as they could, for $5.
Needless to say, we made a few hundred bucks! But we still about a third left so we called the Vietnam Veterans Association and they were able to pick up our left-over items the next morning! We wanted a quick turn around time so these items wouldn’t ‘sneak back in the house’ like so many forlorn garage sale items do. Garage sales are not times to be sentimental. Not only is this our homes that we’re clearing out, but it’s also our brain space!
This was the hardest part for me, which is odd because I normally swing to the side of practicality (An annoying Alaskan trait, I think) rather than being sentimental. However, what was difficult for me was gifts from others. More than anything, I don’t want to offend or be seen as ungrateful! We have beautiful friends and family that love to give us things! We very much appreciate these thoughtful gestures, but we had to draw some hard lines when it comes to keeping “thing”. I’ve never been one for decorations in my house that didn’t also serve another purpose (I’m relaxing a bit with this concept), but there comes a point when I can only deal with so many “things” that don’t serve a purpose.
So my lovely friends and family. We love you! We love your thoughtful gestures of kindness. Also, we love you wanting to show us love, but we had to slim down on the STUFF! Please don’t think we’re being ungrateful, or rude, or anything other than thankful!
But, our brain space, our homes, our clutter level, and our shelves, needed to go on a diet!
Another aspect that this book, and it’s sister book Unstuffed: Decluttering Your Home, Mind, and Soul, opened my eyes too is saying no to schedule clutter too! As moms, we’re already busy with our husbands, kids, and homes. But then we have PTA meetings, volunteering at this school and that church event, then we have Tupperware parties, pampered chef, lularoe, Chloe & Isbell etc. It’s all STUFF that fills our schedule that doesn’t get us any closer to our end goals in life or as a family. My hubby and I have made some REALLY difficult decisions lately to slim down our schedules. This includes saying NO to impromptu hangouts, the 17 different friends’ Lularoe parties, saying NO to volunteering at church (to an extent, we all need to serve at our local church in some capacity!), saying NO NO NO! Enough is enough! My family comes first, my goals for our family come first! My time is worth more than that. We’re already too busy of a society, we really don’t need anything distracting us from what really matters.
I hope you’ve found this helpful! I strongly recommend this book. If you allow it to, it can help you gain that tough perspective on the CLUTTER in your own home!