Entering the Clearing Out Mindset

May 17, 2015 | | Say something


We all seem to crave space, but we often don’t know when to stop accumulating things either. If you have enjoyed the luxury of moving into a larger home or office recently, you had better enjoy that moment of having some space to move around in while it lasts, because sadly it won’t last as long as you think. Somehow in the following months, spaces get filled with extra bits of furniture, decorations and bundles of items that were once useful but are now cast aside or padding out cupboards, hidden from view whilst the items that should be in the cupboards are piled up untidily or unceremoniously dumped into boxes.

There is a certain mindset that comes with elegant organisation, throwing away what really needs to be thrown away, and identifying items that are genuinely useful but don’t have their place in the home right now. It’s very much a case of seeing things how they are, coming to an objective summation of whether you really need any of the things in the cupboard that you barely ever go into, if you are storing items for a purpose or simply hoarding items that you can’t be bothered to try and get rid of. I know the feeling, until a couple of years ago I had all manner of broken consumer electronics going dusty underneath my desk, simply because it was easier to leave it all there than spend half an afternoon driving to the local electricals recycling centre, queuing up and dealing with all the processes there. At least that was how I was assessing things – I was turning something that would in reality take under an hour into a massive hassle that would greatly inconvenient one of my rare days off. Procrastination at its very finest, ladies and gentlemen.

Back to the topic, a good clearout and reorganise can make your place look just like the day you moved in. It is however often difficult to start because people put far too much pressure on getting the fine details right, or waiting for this amazing occasion to arise when they will have nothing to do but tidy up. In fact, the best thing to do is to create a resolution to yourself that for a month you are simply going to spend just half an hour each day sorting out an area of the house – I once did this literally by area, starting at one point and finishing back at it having gone full circle. Alternatively, and this was my latest trick, tell yourself that you have to throw out a bag of rubbish every day – I tell you, it doesn’t take long to do that once you get in the swing of it.

It pays to be straightforward and ruthless. Keeping items that are just there to dwell in the past serves no purpose for the present, neither does keeping items that promised their worth in the near future, but the day of use is eternally yet to show up. The same can be said for projects that you never really got hands-on with – I have to admit still keeping onto bits of equipment that got a bit of light use once upon a time but where my passion is forever yet to be rekindled.

Another possibility is to try sell items that may have some monetary worth, or give them away to people who may need them. Charity shops will take lots of things off your hands these days, not just books and outdated clothing, but specialist furniture outlets run by charities are popping up and are immensely useful for finding vintage furniture at knock-down prices. There are also opportunities aplenty to delegate some of your items to a self storage unit near you, where items that you want to keep but might not fit in with your home environment can be made to feel welcome.

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