Thursday, January 24, 2013

Basta, Stuff!

Raptitude's David and I are drinking the same Kool Aid, it seems. He's set himself a goal to delete the stuff in his life and only keep the things. And there is a difference.

Wednesday, January 09, 2013

You Have Too Much And Others Don't Have Much - Where to Donate Stuff

So much to post while I'm decluttering, downsizing, and simplifying my life and so little time so first please forgive me and second, let me say, Happy New Year!

We're back home with a brand new kitchen, the old me would find a places to cram 10 lbs of crap into a 5 lb bag. The new me, however, is doing it differently: Evaulating all the stuff and making decisions about how I feel about each thing. The useful and beautiful stuff stays and the rest goes elsewhere.

Here's a list of NYC organizations which accept donations. If you're pressed for time and space, however, i'ts best if you drop your donations off to locations yourself;  not surprisingly, most of the charities I contacted this morning - including the Salvation Army - admitted they they too are overrun with too much stuff, and wait times are long for their Pick Up Services via truck.

More soon on other ways to move the un-used and un-loved stuff in your life out to those who could really use them!

Tuesday, November 13, 2012

Fortune Cookie Brilliance: There Can Be Economy Only Where There is Efficiency

"There can be economy only where there is efficiency."

 LEARN CHINESE: Bean Sprout  / dou ya

Lucky Numbers: 56, 50, 43, 27, 49, 41

This fortune is spot on!  So accurate that I kept it in my wallet for a few months until I had a chance to write this post today. (Now that I have, I am tossing the fortune -as small as it is- into the recycling bin as proof that I'm staying on point here :  no matter how tiny the piece of paper, it no longer needs to take up space in my life that I've shared the wisdom online).

We generally believe that more choice is "more better" and that more is more is more. More options. More supplies. More bulk = more savings. But more stuff than one needs usually has only one guaranteed result: getting in the way of getting things done. Inefficiency wastes time, our most precious resource.

What kinds of things do you keep and why? Miss Minimalist's article on Exorcising Your Clutter Ghosts shines a light on those scary corners of your closets and helps you face the fear and reap the rewards of living with less.

Now, I'll try to remember to play those lucky numbers the next time I have a $1 for Lotto.

Oh, and dou ya*!

*bean sprout

How to Change Your Mind

Remember: You can change your mind!

Friday, October 26, 2012

Owning Less is Easier Than Organizing More

Did someone say easier? Music to my ears!

Don't Just Declutter. De-Own.
By Joshua Becker.

■ "It doesn’t benefit anyone else. The possessions that we rarely use sit on shelves in our basements, attics, and garages… even while some of our closest friends desperately need them.

■It doesn’t solve our debt problems. It never addresses the underlying issue that we just buy too much stuff. In fact, many times, the act of rearranging our stuff even costs us more as we purchase containers, storage units, or larger homes to house it.

■It doesn’t turn back our desire for more. The simple act of organizing our things into boxes, plastic bins, or extra closets doesn’t turn back our desire to purchase more things. The culture-driven inclination to find happiness in our possessions is rarely thwarted in any way through the process.

■It doesn’t force us to evaluate our lives. While rearranging our stuff may cause us to look at each of our possessions, it does not force us to evaluate them… especially if we are just putting them in boxes and closing the lids. On the other hand, removing possessions from our home forces questions of passion, values, and what’s truly most important to us.

■It accomplishes little in paving the way for other changes. Organizing may provide a temporary lift to our attitude. It clears a room and subsequently clears our mind, but rarely paves the way for healthy, major lifestyle changes. Our house is too small, our income is too little, and we still can’t find enough time in the day. We may have rearranged our stuff… but not our lives."

Read the rest of the article here...

And for more, inspiration and ideas from Joshua Becker, visit his website, Becoming Minimalist !

Thursday, October 25, 2012

You're Winning Space by Losing Stuff

My friends at 365 Things recently posted about the strategy of Focusing on the Space as a way to keep the energy up if (and inevitably when) your delucluttering mission gets discouraging or the amount of stuff you have seems insumountable.

It's true that our belongings can define us sometimes or feel like a part of us; oftentimes not even because we love or like them but simply because they've been in our lives so long.

Decluttering and reducing the stuff in our lives can seem like a punishment because sometimes it's admitting to yourself that you made a poor purchase and getting rid of them seems like a huge loss: I know they don't fit well and I never wear them, but I paid so much for these shoes!

But that's not the whole picture.

You're not really losing a pair of shoes if you don't even wear them in the first place.

Because losing 1 bad pair of shoes actually makes you a winner in 3 ways:
  1. It frees up a pair of shoes to someone who might love them
  2. It frees up your mind from the sight of a bad pair of shoes that remind you of a bum purchase
  3. It frees up precious closet space for a pair of shoes you love to wear which desserve to be there. (And if you're still on the hunt for the perfect pair of shoes, then you get to admire the empty, tranquil space which is also quite satifying.)

Focus on the gain, not the loss!

Tuesday, October 23, 2012

Cindy's Not Perfect Either!

The Latest from Cindy at 365 Less Things: Cindy's Weekly Wisdom on Perfectionism!

"Perfectionism. Can you be too perfect? Oh yeah. Ironically, many cluttered people are perfectionists. Certainly perfectionism was one of the anchors that used to hold me back.

Wanting everything to be perfect can keep you from making progress in a number of ways:

  • You don’t have the perfect organization system, so you have no system.

  • You can’t get rid of something because you need to determine the perfect person / perfect place for that item to go next.

  • You know the perfect person – the exact perfect person – and the fact that you only see them once every two years is not going to budge you from hanging onto the item until that day comes around again.

  • You’re afraid that you don’t have the perfect amount of time necessary to tackle a decluttering job as perfectly as it deserves, so you don’t start…ever.

  • You fear that your efforts will get messed up – they won’t remain perfect, so why get started at all?

Good enough is good enough! Are your ideas about perfection – both its desirability and your ability to achieve it – holding you back from making progress? One day at a time, one thing at a time will get you where you want to go. No perfection necessary.   --------------------

Where to begin?   Start with the Easy Stuff : from 365 Less Things    

I'm so glad Cindy covered the topic of perfectionism, because I couldn't agree more - and speak from experience- that folks with too much stuff usually are perfectionists and perfectionism is a huge stumbling block. If waited for this blog to be perfect-- and I did for a long time-- I'd not be posting at all. Once I got that through my head, and reminded myself that everything  (including myself) is a work in progress, I jumped in.  Ready or not.