Monday, October 29, 2012

Where Did All This Stuff Come From?

 By Kate Collins

I’m days away from moving to a new home, a smaller place that requires a paring down of my belongings by half. As I systematically go through all my cabinets, drawers, and closets, I’m overwhelmed by the sheer amount of stuff.  How did that happen? Were things propagating in the closet?

It’s impossible to calculate how much money was spent acquiring all of it because it happened over so many years. How much of it is essential? Not very much.

And yet I have a difficult time parting with it.  I have a bad habit of attaching sentimental value to objects. I hold onto them even when I don’t use them or want to display them. But since my storage space will be limited, I’ve had to be ruthless about weeding out all but the most important things.  I worry that what I’ve saved won’t find a place in the new house and then what will I do?

The oddest thing has happened to me during this process. I find I don’t want to accumulate any more stuff. Paring down has given me a sense of freedom, and I like the clean, sparser look. Now when my friends are oohing over home decorations at Pier 1, all I can think of is that I’ll have to store it somewhere.

Where do you fall on the scale of sparseness to clutter? Have you ever had to pare down or does the thought of doing so bring on an anxiety attack? Do you hold onto things because of sentiment?

Here’s the biggest question. Could you give away half of everything you own?

Have a great week.