I don’t know why but I had to start it somewhere. And that is what is happening soon. I’m trying to figure out the best way I can do this quickly and it turns out that I need to set things up right to efficiently declutter. Now, this isn’t a case where I’m saying I have to have the right music or it needs to be the right time of day or I need to be in the mood. Given my mental makeup, I get overwhelmed if I try to go through things “in place”. I get distracted, lose track, and end up playing with stuff. But I used to do this – my mom would say “not often and not willingly” – when I was younger. How did I do it?
Well, I would clear a space in my messy room. And by that I mean I would take a section of my room, generally about an eighth of the room, and remove everything from it. I would shovel stuff from one section of the floor to another. Any small furniture would get moved. Stuff would come down from shelves. Then I would go through the now-even-messier seven-eighths of my room and look for everything that belonged in the empty eighth. Once that was complete I would repeat the process with another section. During all of this I would find stuff that I obviously didn’t want (garbage, broken things, clothes I hated, etc) and move it to the hallway to be disposed of.
My bed was always the last section. Now, the only things that belonged on the bed were my bedding and the books I was currently reading. That meant that anything left there was most likely something I didn’t need or want and could be removed.
Now what does all this mean today? It means I am going to clear a space. And when I say that I am going to do it I mean Jules is doing the lion’s share of the work to find new homes for stuff because she is amazing and I’d just throw it out rather than deal with strangers. We have a space that looks like this:
Not too bad, right? A little cluttered but manageable. But if we pull back the curtains:
A bunch of stuff we don’t need. A lot of it was not ours originally – neither of us plays piano, which is what you can see a little of under those boxes. Jules has found a new home for the table (it is going away tonight to a needy family) and we are really trying to find someone to take the piano. Other stuff under there includes my old chain mail gear, an air conditioner, boxes and bags of stuff. We are going to clear this out on Saturday.
Then I will relive part of my childhood, hauling stuff I want to keep from my old bedroom down to here. Everything else can go.