perfect opportunity to organize, need tips

twinkieokDecember 1, 2007

Hi all, I'm new around here. I have been lurking for quite a while though. I now have the perfect opportunity to get rid of stuff. We are getting new carpet installed next week and I have to get all of the "little stuff" out of the bedrooms before the installers come.

Oh... my... goodness. I have so much JUNK. There is no way I want all of that stuff to go back in the rooms, stuffed in the closets and under the beds as it has been.

So please, I need tips. How can I whittle this stuff down? I have ten big boxes filled already!

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lucy

You need .... more boxes, but specifically labelled (empty some of the old ones and use them). One should be called Trash, another For garage Sale, a third For Goodwill box, a fourth To Keep. Of the To Keep ones, sort a second time and decide if you really need the things, i.e. have you worn them in the last year? Have they ever fit properly? Are you 'saving' cheap little bits of things for that rainy day (when you'll never find them anyhow) and you'll just end up buying new anyway (this one's my downfall!)? Once you've sorted everything, make good on your decisions and get the sale done, go to Goodwill, throw out or recycle what's trash, etc. Then decide which room(s) would be the best place to put (back) things into that aren't clothes, and get some matching baskets to go on your new shelving unit that you're going to buy with all the money you made at the sale :-)! Label the baskets if necessary and stick to your commitment to put things away when finished with them.

    Bookmark   December 1, 2007 at 2:28PM
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jannie

Just decide now that NOTHING gets returned to the room unless you have a need for it and a proper storage place.

    Bookmark   December 1, 2007 at 4:30PM
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bud_wi

Or you could; When you need to use something, retrieve it from the box, use it, and then find a place for it in the room. After six months anything left in the box gets donated.

    Bookmark   December 2, 2007 at 2:09PM
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comettose

For those things you want to store and keep buy clear storage bins so you can see what is in them, and sort by type if possible (Christmas, Halloween, photographs, momentos, etc.).

    Bookmark   December 2, 2007 at 4:58PM
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talley_sue_nyc

I think everybody's covered most of the tactics.

I just want to chime in and encourage you to just toss stuff. So much of the stuff I find I have in my home is stuff someone else gave me, or I used it once and don't anymore but it feels vaguely useful.

If you feel at ALL vague about it, get it out! Remember that you really are, compared with the rest of the world, pretty rich (hey, you can afford new carpet--many people can't afford FOOD!).

And so, if you really decided you needed something later, you could afford to buy it all over again. Or if you wanted something (let's say you tossed a pair of black pants, then decided you needed a pair of black pants) all over again, wouldn't you be able to (and maybe even enjoy) going out to buy a new pair?

(the one exception I'd make in my own life would be pants, as long as they actually FIT, because I find that pants are the thing for which fashion styles change them so much I can't stand to wear them)

Also, every time you look at the empty closet, or thing about having elbow room in there, WALLOW IN THAT FEELING A LITTLE. Build up the "reward" by reinforcing that reaction.

Best of luck--be tough, be fierce, be an advocate for the elbow room and breathing space in your life!

    Bookmark   December 3, 2007 at 9:34AM
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twinkieok

Thank you, thank you! I am liking the idea of leaving things in the box for 6 months, or maybe 3. I am DEFINITELY enjoying the empty bedrooms!

    Bookmark   December 3, 2007 at 8:45PM
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woleile

I agree with talley sue, donate everything you don't have a clear present need for, even knowing that someday down the road you'll need one of the things you donated. Here's why: the only way to be sure you'll still have that one thing down the road is to keep all 500, and that's too big a price to pay. The peace of mind and breathing room now is absolutely worth the price of another (whatever) a year from now. As long as the thing you donated wasn't Grandma's silver! :)

LauraG

    Bookmark   December 5, 2007 at 2:14PM
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woleile

One more thing: at the end of each day's decluttering, get those boxes out of there! They can go directly to the thrift store (my preference) or just collect in the car till you have a big load. Getting them out will allow you to enjoy the results of your work now, and motivate you to keep at it!

LauraG

    Bookmark   December 5, 2007 at 2:21PM
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