This week, I (Dawn) read a post over at Get Rich Slowly by Lisa Aberle that really resonated with me: “Declutter and save your sense.” I’ve always thought of myself as an organized person, and in some ways I am. In other ways, not so much. The past few weeks, I’ve had the urge to declutter the house, but I’ve been at a loss for where to start. I look around and there just seems to be so much stuff, I can’t decide what goes, what stays, and if it stays, where should I put it?

This post came at just the right time. Aberle discusses this very topic, and has some great tips that I plan on implementing right away in my quest to declutter. Her stand is that when she declutters her life, her finances get decluttered as well. Here are her thoughts:

  • “Easier is the goal” – Basically, you have to make the decision on what is easier for your life. Is it easier to have an overflowing basement or garage filled with stuff you may never use, may not even want? Is it easier to keep things “in case” you may need them in the future? In most cases, if you really think about it, holding on to all that stuff does not make your life easier; it often just stresses you out (like it does me!).
  • “Just say no” – You can probably think of plenty of times that you brought something into your house that you didn’t want or need. Something you got for free, or bought on a good deal. Often, those items just sit around, taking up space, and not enhancing your life. So, Aberle says, “just say no.” You likely won’t regret not bringing it home.
  • “Purge” – This is my favorite one. There is something very liberating about purging. Just getting rid of the stuff, no contemplating where to have to store something, just tossing it. There are plenty of ways to do so. If you have the determination, you could try to sell your old items (through a garage sale, eBay, Craigslist, etc.), however, I wouldn’t recommend this course of action if you are prone to holding on to anything that doesn’t sell (get rid of what doesn’t sell!). Your best bet is likely donation or even the trash if the item is not worth saving.
  • “Be systematic” – This is always where I’ve fallen flat in the past. I purge and organize, and get everything cleaned up, and I feel proud of my work. But then things start to pile up again. The basement starts to look like a mess, and I have piles of paper everywhere. Once you go through the process of decluttering, you need to set up a system for all the stuff that is going to come into your house going forward. Where is it going to go? What is going to be trashed automatically? Once I go through this round of decluttering, I will definitely implement this step in hopes of keeping the house organized moving forward.

Aberle also recommends some sites to check out to help you get started. I would definitely check out her post if you are looking to do some decluttering yourself.

 

  • Disclaimer: The information on this blog is not meant for specific financial advice. The ideas/opinions stated are not suited for everyone, and readers should use their own judgment in applying them in their financial lives.
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