My house is home to many family heirlooms and antiques. They add to the welcoming and comfortable feeling of our home. I mix them with more contemporary pieces for a transitional look that both my husband and I love. However, it wasn’t until recently that I was open to changing or parting with any of the antiques. In looking to downsize, our new home could never accommodate all of the furniture that we have acquired.
Memories are attached to many of the things that we own. Whether something was owned by a loved one or you received it as a gift, it can have a sentimental attachment. It’s difficult to part with these items when attempting to simplify your life. So, how can we simplify our lives without feeling guilty in the process?
If the item is not something that you are using, we have to ask ourselves why we are still keeping it. Perhaps, it is the memories attached to it or the amount of money that you spent on the items or even just one piece in particular. If you are not using the item, you need to purge it from your life.
Purging these items is not a quick process. After all, it took you some time to acquire these items in the first place. You will need to take the time to go through your things and make a determination of what you want to do with them.
I wouldn’t take any steps to remove the items just yet. I would put the items in designated boxes to donate or sell, and I would wait. Why should you wait? You need to make sure that you are willing to part with these items without feeling any pangs of regret.
The waiting period does not mean that you should wait for an extended period. You need to set a specific date that the items will leave your home. It could be a week, two weeks, or a month. At any rate, you need to make sure that you have that date set so that the items will leave your home at some point.
During that waiting period, take the time to consider the things that you have purged. You may leave them in the boxes and completely forget about them. You may pass by the boxes and look through them occasionally. If any item is questionable, take it out of the box and reconsider whether you want to part with it. This waiting period gives you the time to emotionally detach yourself from the items rather than giving them away immediately and feeling regret later.
Research has shown that people only wear 20% of what they own. If this is the case, why do we continue to keep the other 80% in our closet?
Clothing is an investment. We spend our hard-earned money to acquire the items that we have in our closet. As a result, it’s harder to purge our clothing knowing that we won’t get out of the items the money that we put into them.
You need to take a hard look at what’s in your closet. Are there items that you haven’t worn in the last six months, nine months, or a year? If this is the case, you may want to consider purging those items from your closet.
You should also schedule an afternoon to try on the clothing that you have in your closet. Perhaps, your style has changed, the item doesn’t fit the way that you want it to, or the clothing item has gone out of style. If this is the case, you should consider purging those clothing items, as well.
Your closet should only house the items that you love and wear on a regular basis. It will make it that much easier to get dressed in the morning.
Family heirlooms are one area that is tough to deal with when it comes to purging items. The items typically hold memories, or there is a feeling of guilt that you associate with getting rid of them.
You need to ask some very serious questions at this point.
- Do you love the item?
- Is the item being used?
- Do you have room in your home to keep the item?
- Does the item fit in with your current decor? If it doesn’t, can it be updated or are you willing to update it so you can use it in your home?
- Do you see passing this item down to a family member?
If the answer to the above questions is no, then you need to consider giving away or selling the item so someone else can use and enjoy it.
It can be difficult to part with the things we own when attempting to simplify our life. It’s important to take the time to go through the items, ask ourselves some serious questions, and wait if necessary. Purging items that we no longer want or use help in simplifying our life.
Until next time,
P.S. – I need your help. Could you take a couple of minutes and fill out a quick survey about our blog, Living a Simplified Life? Thank you so much! I truly appreciate it. You can access the survey here.
P.P.S. – Keep in touch with Living a Simplified Life: Our email offers a behind the scenes look at the blog, and a peek at my personal life. It includes content and printables that you won’t find on the blog. As a thank you, you will receive a free Decluttering Tips and Tricks printable and a Decluttering Checklist printable. Sign up to get our weekly emails, so you don’t miss anything.