Weekly Quick Tips

Anticipating and Removing Obstacles to your Decluttering Success

We’ve heard them all before ~ the reasons why you just can’t get rid of an item that you never use. Before you begin purging a cluttered space, think about which items will be a challenge for you to let go of, along with the reason that they’ll be difficult to let go of. Is there a common thread?  The reasons are your obstacles. Listed below are some simple strategies for removing common obstacles which should help you to move forward.

Obstacle 1: The “I might need it someday” syndrome.

Strategy: Decide when someday is. If you can’t come up with a definite answer, then assign an arbitrary date up to six months out in the future. Put them in a box, write the date on the outside if the box, and move on. If the someday comes and goes and you haven’t needed the item…you are now free to send it off to a happier place. Ah, doesn’t that feel good?

Obstacle 2: The “I paid good money for this” syndrome.

Strategy: Accept that the money is spent. No amount of hanging on to an item can bring the money back. Whether you keep it or not, the money is gone. Forever. Cut your losses and move on. If you look at something and feel guilty about what you paid for it, yet you’re not using it, the guilt won’t entice you to use the item. Why linger in the guilt? Let it go.

Obstacle 3: The “gift” syndrome.

Strategy: Take the fact that the item was a gift out of the equation.

When you come across a gift you’re on the fence about keeping, ask yourself if you need, use or love the item. If the answer is no, you aren’t obligated to keep it. A gift doesn’t come with strings attached. I know this one can be hard to swallow…but it’s true. Allow yourself to focus on the person who gave you the gift, and their meaning to you, instead of feeling tied to the gift itself.

Obstacle 4: The “garage sale” syndrome.

Strategy: Find an alternative happy home for your previously-enjoyed items. The garage sale syndrome sets in when you have decided to let go of some things, and yet they continue to linger in your presence, waiting for ‘the big garage sale’. It’s true, garage sales can be a way to turn some of your no longer needed items into cash. But not without a cost. If letting go of things is difficult for you, a garage sale simply extends the process. Instead, find a charity you’ll feel good about donating your items to.

Obstacle 5: The Storage “Solution”

Strategy: Unless you are moving and need ‘temporary storage’, external storage is nothing more than clutter alimony.

In celebration of Senior’s Month, we’re celebrating our local Seniors this week!

Join us for a FREE party in the park at the Oshawa Seniors Citizens Centre’s Swing Into Summer! Memorial Park in Oshawa on Wednesday June 6th from 10:30 to 3pm.

And then….join us at Rotary Park in Ajax on Thursday June 7th for a free seniors BBQ from 11:30 to 1:30pm. Be sure not to miss the Ajax Senior of the Year presentation! See you there!

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