Monday, November 12, 2012

Out with the Old

I am a changed woman! I love to throw things away. I used to be sentimental about stuff, but over the years I have learned to toss out unnecessary items that I know I will never look at again and won't care to. For example, things my classmates signed for me back in middle school. We had this phase where we had everyone sign everything. I had poster boards, Tshirts, caps, notebooks, etc. All signed by the same people, half of whom I no longer am in touch with either. I threw out everything except a small baseball cap. Which I think I ended up tossing out because I can't find it anywhere. There weren't any personal messages on there, just generic "Keep in touch!" Stuff. So that went away.

I do hang on to cards and letters. I think they are a little more personal to me, so I keep those. Old shirts, socks, binders from my classes, notebooks, gone! I attribute this to having lived in India. That was the first time in my life I moved anywhere and I couldn't take everything with me. While in India we moved house 4 times! It was so annoying and even more annoying with so much stuff. It was amazing how much junk one can collect over the years.

A year and a half of moving back to America I got married and had to move again. So all this moving in such a short amount of time definitely did me some good in the clutter department! It wasn't easy to part with things people would find sentimental, but I got over it. Now I can't wait to throw things out. I've crated a list of things that help me get my life organized.

1. If I didn't look at it on over a year {in my case, many many years}, I shouldn't keep it. It's not worth it. Yes, some of my stuff is from my childhood, but I have memories and photos and that's enough for me. Everything else just makes my space look unorganized.

2. Clothes, shoes and accessories: Torn, discolored, or worn out items need to be tossed out. If you were to - God forbid - be in a car accident and needed strangers to help you get out, would you be embarrassed by what you were wearing? If the answer is yes, then get rid of it. Clothes that don't fit right and have not over the past year should go. Anything you can't style in a way that you like should also go. If you MUST keep old clothing, store it in a box or suitcase, throw a box of mothballs in there and put it in the basement or other storage area. Ideally, give it away. Accessories and shoes you would not be caught dead in should also go. If it STILL has the receipt on it, you haven't worn it because you love it but it doesn't look right on you yet, just return it. Places like TJ Maxx and Marshalls will give you store credit, no matter how old the item. Buy something else that fits well  and flatters your body and chances are you'll wear it a lot more.

3. Minimalism is key. Why do I need 3 deodorant sticks? I don't. I also don't need 298 pens and highlighters cluttering my desk. Yes, I am a student but I don't need that much. Give them to a doctor friend. Do you know how quickly some of them lose pens on a daily basis? A lot.

4. Think about how nice and organized everything will look once all the junk it gone. Every few months I de-clutter and I go through at least one large garbage bag every time. Stuff adds up. For  receipts, bills, etc buy an accordion folder with tabs in it. That way you can keep all your important papers in one place and know exactly where it is when you need it.

5. That's all I can think of that works for me. When I'm bored I like to look up organization tips or watch videos on YouTube. That really gets me inspired to make a move. After all the stuff is gone, you can work on the best part. For me, at least. Decorating!! Making it all pretty/fun/pleasing to the eyes.

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