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Taking a huge step

post #1 of 15
Thread Starter 
First off - Hi, my name is Regina and this is my 1st time posting in this forum.
This is going to be a long and boring post but I feel the need to share to make myself accountable for actually following through.
I've been struggling for years with the chaos that is my home. I've made small changes through the last few years but am now considering doing something I consider quite radical.
My issue in the past has been both poor organizational skills/ADD and hanging on to stuff or gathering stuff that has no use for our family. I have way too many things 'just in case.' And as many of you may know - when I do need it, I have no idea of where to find it so I have to buy another anyway. So anyway - on to my plan. I am seriously considering going room to room and just ridding our house of everything we do not need or use on a daily basis. Like half used bottles of whatever in the bathroom, already read magazines, toys w/ missing pieces, unsold yard sale items, clothes I like but haven't worn in years and probably never will but.....things like that.
I could organize a sale, donate some, freecycle some but have the urge to throw it all out. Usually one I try to organize and donate and freecycle I get sidetracked and end up holding on to the stuff even longer.
So my plan to go room to room starting this week and just clear my house.
Which I feel will in turn clear my mind. Which will help me enjoy my life more. And most importantly - I will enjoy my family/children more.

Anyone else felt the urge or actually followed through with it?

My biggest fear is that I am losing money on things I will discard/give away.
I have struggled through life financially with most of my years spent living well below the poverty level.
Right now I feel so content with my life and do feel I am content with less.
Well, not only content - happier.

Thanks for listening.
post #2 of 15
Good luck! I rhink this is part of my problem, I always think "someonne" could use : and feel bad throwing it out. Things that need fixed are the worst!
post #3 of 15
I need to do that too! I sell kids clothes online and my house is overrun with them, but it is also overrun with everything else too!
post #4 of 15
mdm- you could be reading my mind. My experience with "stuff" is much like yours.

And I am so freaking superstitious. If I give away something given to me by someone I love I just think "what if they die now, I'll be so sorry I gave that away!"
post #5 of 15
I'm right there with you. I would love to put stuff on eBay, but never seem to make it happen. I think it is costing me emotionally, more than I would get at an auction...looking at all my stuff is physically draining!

I hope you are successful with your purge! One room at a time is an excellent idea. How much time are you giving yourself for each room?
I thought I could do a couple rooms in a day; boy was I disappointed when I only made it through part of a room in a day.
Make realistic goals and I'm sure you will succeed.
Keep us posted!
post #6 of 15
Thread Starter 
Thanks everyone for the support.
Today was a family day so no major housework was done.
I did inspire my 16 yr old to purge her room when i mentioned my post on here. She is already way more organized than i am.
I plan on tackling one room at a time. The problem i have ran into in the past is starting one room, getting distracted and ending up partly doing a few rooms and really not accomplishing much.
Posting on here makes me feel like i have to account for my progress.
I hope to get our main bathroom done tomorrow. It sounds like a small task but it is amazing how stuffed our sink cabinet is. And we have an over the toilet cabinet that is not so filled but has baskets of 'crap' on it.
Anyway, that is my plan and i'll let you know how it actually turns out.

Thanks for listening.
post #7 of 15
This is something I really want to do too. And I know what you mean about just wanting to chuck the stuff as opposed to holding onto it long enough for someone on freecycle to be interested and actually come pick it up...but I personally really hate the thought of throwing useful things away. Could you just put it all on the porch/lawn and post a freecycle ad stating that you have (insert some of the things available) and they will be out for peope to rummage through on such and such a day and that everything will be thrown away that isn't taken? I know people around here would love the chance to do that and I doubt anything would be left. I had a one day yard sale early this summer (not a good idea while pregnant) and after the sale was finished I put free signs out and let people take whatever they wanted. I got rid of a ton of things cluttering my house and made $60 for hanging out on the porch with my grandmother (who helped me and sold some of her own things) for 6 hours. I used the $60 to buy myself some things to help me organize more efficiently and it made me feel soooo good. Just an idea.

Oh~and welcome to MDC!
post #8 of 15
I also tend to get overwhelmed when I try to do wayyy too much at once. And I ended up getting more depressed and putting it off more.
post #9 of 15
I have been walking that path of moving from cluttered home/cluttered mind to outwardly simple/inwardly rich.

I found it hardest at the beginning. Getting rid of stuff uses a muscle that pack-rats haven't exercised much, so it hurts. Its hard to think clearly sometimes. It helps to have a friend/relative who is clutter-free sit with you while you purge - he/she can offer good questions about items that you are unsure what to do with to help your mind stay in focus and make decisions VS remaining in that state of vacillation that can be so draining.

Simplifying is so worth it. And once that decluttering muscle is stronger, it becomes much, much easier. Now I am eager to get rid of things and love the simpler life.

Wishing you the detachment & discipline to move ahead! Just think, all this stuff we have now will be in someone else's hands in 70 years. Its not that important after all.
post #10 of 15
I think devising a weekly schedual for not every day but Monday is my bedroom day, Tuesday is bathroom day for your decluttering, but its such an ongoing struggle its not funny!

Honestly don't have a sale just bulk donate it to a charity.
one stop drop off and you don't have to 'see' it again.

My biggest fear is that I am losing money on things I will discard/give away.
=common thinking but you are actually probably loosing money by not knowing what you have where (most of us have bought something twice because we couldn't find/see how many we had of that item!)

Or work backwards make a list of what you need aka:
4 pairs of jeans and go pick out the four best then chuck the rest.

good luck its amazing how much 'crap' i've gotten out of here and still see little floor!
post #11 of 15
Thread Starter 
Well .... I completed my first task.
The bathroom is cleared out.
To be real honest, there are a couple of things that may go in the next week or so once i ask around if anyone is ever going to use them here.
But I feel like I accomplished something.

Tomorrow I will tackle the dining room. I intend to clear off the table and clear out the cabinet in the corner.

Hopefully by the weekend I will be ready for a big project like the living room.

I am still going around gathering stuff for a donation.
I have two places for my stuff to go to and we'll donating in mil's name since we make so little we can't use the tax break like she can.
I see myself making weekly trips to drop off for the next month.

I still have a great urge to have a yard sale and make some money on a lot of this stuff. I had planned on having one early in the month but we had rain,rain,rain.
At this point though- I just have the energy for one.
I will get rid of this stuff, though. I really will.
post #12 of 15
Thread Starter 
Well, I still haven't completed the dining room.
I feel so defeated.

I hate all this crap and I hate feeling so overwhelmed by stuff.

I'm going to try harder today- at least get the dining room completed.

Maybe I'll even get a few bags together to bring to Salvation Army tomorrow.
post #13 of 15
Just keep going - a little at a time. I do pretty well with the first floor level of my house, but my bedroom and spare bedroom are ongoing issues for me. You have to just keep moving in small chunks. My kids have a large playroom in the basement that had become extremely cluttered and had way too much stuff. My husband, my kids, and I spent an entire rainy Saturday working together to clean it. We donated a huge box of unused toys and neated up the ones they wanted to keep. Now they actually have a nice space to play in. It really helped to have us all working together and pushing each other along when we got overwhelmed. The playroom is still nice and neat a month later - I still feel good thinking about it. Do you have a friend or family member who could help you? It is easier to get rid of stuff that isn't yours - a friend might help you figure out what is important to keep and what is not.

Yet, here I sit because I am overwhelmed by my tasks for today...

post #14 of 15
I could have written the OP. Our house is just totally over run with stuff. My stuff, dh's stuff, dd's stuff. Stuff we might need someday, stuff we used to need but don't anymore, stuff that was left behind by the people that used to own our house, stuff that people gave us that we don't use...

One "rule" I try to follow (when I can get myself motivated to de-clutter in the first place) is to ask myself - about each thing in my house - is it


My "rule" is that everything I own should be at least one of those things. Otherwise, it's taking up space in my house, sapping my energy, and draining me emotionally.

Should we start a "Radical house purging" thread?
post #15 of 15
Books are the main object of clutter around here. It is hard to get rid of a book! I'm making a real effort to not buy books. I don't really spend that much on them as I mainly buy used, but books can stay in the library and visit me once in a while.
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