Is All You Have Causing Problems?

Are you running out of space in your home or apartment?  You know – you have very little room for anything new you buy or get.

If you are, you are an awful lot like me. I moved to Knoxville from Illinois 2 years ago. Prior to the move I got rid of a lot of stuff However, I still had to rent the largest truck U-Haul had. That truck was packed from floor to roof with all of my life’s possessions. There was no room for anything else.  The stuff which didn’t fit ended up in my Chevrolet Equinox. That was full too.

Right from Birth We Accumulate Stuff.

As the years pass, we add more and more to it. Many are items of sentimental value. We also add other items we think we need. The funny thing is we rarely look at what we have stored away to see if we really need it or will use it again

Suddenly late in life, we find the amount we have accumulated is really overwhelming. We cannot manage it properly.

If we never go through all that stuff and get rid of those things we don’t need or never will use again, our loved ones will have to after a severe illness takes us out of our home or apartment or after we die. We don’t even think about how emotionally and physically difficult this may be for them.

Rather than cause this problem for them, I’m sure you would agree it would be far better for us to go through all that we own and get rid of those things we no longer need. We may be putting this off because it may seem like an overwhelming task.

Let’s Look at Some Ways to Go Through What We Have That is Fun and Easy for Us

First, break everything that has to be done into different tasks.

Second, limit the amount of time we do this to short periods.  Commit to working for 3 hours at any given time.

Third, start with the easiest and work toward the hardest.

Here Are Some Ideas

Start with the clothes in your closets. Turn all of your clothes to face the back of your closet. After you wear a piece of clothing daily, wash it and get ready to put it back in your closet, have it face the front of the closet.

In a short time, all of the clothes you wear regularly will be facing the front of your closet. At the end of the season donate all of the clothes still facing the rear of the closet to KARM, Goodwill or the Salvation Army. These clothes are no longer a part of your wardrobe.

Next, take all of your kitchen utensils (your knives, forks, spoons, etc.) and put all of them in a card board box. When you need anything, take it out of the box. After you use it, place it back in the drawer. At the end of a month or two, ask yourself if you really need those utensils still in the box. Donate those you no longer need.

Then move onto the dresser or chest in your bedroom. Go through each drawer. Make 3 piles on the floor. One pile is what you will keep, the next is what you can donate and the third is what you need to throw out.  Only put the clothing in the pile to keep back in the drawers.

Next move to the medicine cabinets or the drawers in your bathroom. Go through all your medicines and whatever else is there.  Look at the expiration dates on each. Throw out anything where the expiration date has passed. Be careful here and dispose of each in the proper way.

Look at each magazine and book you have.  Make three separate piles here. One is for the books you will keep, the second is for the books you will donate, the last is for the books you will throw out.

Then move on to any storage space you have. Here again, make three separate piles – what you will keep, what you will donate and what you will throw out.

What About Items That Have Sentimental Value?

As you start to look through everything you have, you are going to find things which you no longer use but have sentimental value for you.  Whenever you find one of these, take a picture of it and store it in an album. At various times you can look at these pictures in your album and reconnect to the fond memories tied to each.

If you wear eye glasses or a hearing aid, you probably have old eye glasses or hearing aids in your home. Just keep those you wear now or wore last and donate the other ones.

Items Someone in Your Family May Want

 As you are removing these things you no longer want or need, you are going to come across things someone in your family may want. Set those aside for them. Let them know you can only hold onto them for so long. They will have to pick them up by that date. If they don’t, you will have to give them to someone else.

Don’t Do This Alone – Get Help

If you live by yourself, it may be too difficult to do this yourself. Invite a son or daughter, a relative or close friend to go through your possessions with you.  Make an enjoyable time of it.

Realize – you many never start this task if you think it’s too overwhelming. So only work on it for a small amount of time each day or each week. Also start with the easier things and work your way to those things which are going to take longer.

Most of us never realize . . .

The Clutter in Our Homes or Apartments Can Cause Us to Feel Anxious, Depressed and Overwhelmed

As we go along and clean out the items we no longer use, these conditions start to disappear. So, removing the clutter from our lives can actually be very healthy for us.


If you have any comments on what you have read here, I’d like to hear them. So, please email them to me. Also – if you have any ideas about subjects you would like o to see discussed in future posts, please send me an email and let me know. My email address is