We all know how overwhelming the prospect of sorting/purging can be. Making decisions is mentally exhausting! Especially when you leave them for later, and they start to pile up. So how do you make going through the piles easier, now that they’re noticeably taking over? Oh, and by this, I don’t just mean your space. I’m talking about space, that spot (or the entirety) of your brain that becomes occupied by this stuff, and the time you waste searching for answers or selecting the right bottle of wine to consume while you “tackle this project”.
Stuff is SO distracting from your daily life! And totally not cool for your psyche.
Most of my advice differs from client to client, but I’ve put some thought into a couple general recommendations to help your monster task seem more manageable!
It’s not a huge monstrosity.
First, and possibly most importantly, you must stop looking at the project as one huge monstrosity. So many people will not start a project if they know they won’t finish it in one go. Take a deep breath, and a moment to separate your long-term goal into smaller goals. You can even make a check-list of daily or weekly tasks that seem more achievable with your allotted time. (i.e. two or three boxes on certain days, or start corner behind couch.) As soon as you start checking things off, you’re sure to feel “lighter”, and more optimistic! When you pick a spot to dig in, simply put a sheet or blanket over the rest of your piles. That way the items can’t distract you.
Once you’ve made it past this barrier, the tough part becomes the unnecessary, but “sentimental” items. I have so many people tell me that an item is sentimental, because it was such to someone else. Gifts, inherited items, or items that “cost a fortune” begin to burden us with their presence. An item of sentiment can bring an array of emotions when seeing it for the first time in a long while. When these special memories hit you in the feels, you can’t possibly make a sensible decision. So box them up and label them with a future date to re-address them! I assure you, they will lose power over you before you are acquainted again.
Be honest with yourself!
Overall, the best way to be objective is to be honest with yourself! About why you’re holding on to an item, or who you’re actually saving it for. Don’t hold onto heirlooms for your children, just so that you don’t have to be the one to move them on.
~ Family “heirlooms” are unwanted by most kids these days. (I will have another post dedicated to solely this topic, so stay tuned!)~