Decluttering does not come naturally to me. I tried many times on my own under the thought of “I should do something about this”. But I get overwhelmed or bored so I stop. Or I make a bit of progress and then never start again because it was too much.
None of the methods I had heard about really seemed like they would work for me:
- KonMari – gathering everything in a category and then processing that single category required a lot of work just to set up – what categories to use, what things fit in which category, the process of gathering everything together – before you made any changes.
- Packing parties – getting friends to come over to help pack everything you own. Clothing, furniture, dishes, toiletries. Everything. Then you simply unpack things you use as you need them. After a period of time you see how few of your possessions you actually use and can remove things you don’t need. The issue here is personal – I get anxious in rooms full of moving boxes. I just don’t like it. I would end up unwrapping everything.
- Progressive removal – one item on day one, two on day two, etc. Go on for as long as you care or are able.
- Just doing it – just “suck it up” and clean. Also known as the “Val putters around for an hour or two” method.
The more I read and the more I think, though, the more I realize I need to do this in a way that is meaningful for me. So I decided to do a weekly cycle. On Sunday I will start a pile with one item, Monday I will add two items to the pile, until Saturday I add seven items. The next week I will start again at one and everything will go into a second pile. After the second week I will get rid of the first pile. This will allow me to reconsider whatever is in the first pile before I find it new homes.
Part of the process for me will be taking a picture each day of the items and coming to terms with what value those items brought to my life and accepting that they no longer do. If something comes out of a pile, it will be because I realize it still adds value.