Mini Mission Monday is about finding ten minutes a day to declutter. To make it easy for you, each Monday I set seven declutter missions, one for each day of the week for you to follow. It takes the guess work out of decluttering and makes it easy and “fun” for you to achieve some quick decluttering.
This week the mini missions are based around things that perish when not used for a long time. So even if you think you “might need these things someday” it may turn out the someday is too far away and the items will only be good for the garbage can by the time you get around to using them. Best that you limit the number when purchasing certain things, pass on the things you have too many off that are likely to perish and just accept the fact that some of the things you reduce in number now will just have to be replaced later.
Monday – Today I suggest you do a pen round-up. All pens have ink that can dry up over time so it is best to limit the number you keep on hand. Donate the excess to your local school, take them to your workplace to use them up or offer them to friends or family who might be running short. Even your local post office or bank, whose pens go walk-about on a regular basis, might appreciate your generosity.
Tuesday – Anything with elastic. In my underwear drawers there are always those couple of old bras, pairs of knickers, socks and stockings that only get used on the rare occasion that the ones I prefer to wear run out. On more than one occasion I have encountered the problem that these spare pairs are no longer useable because the elastic has perished during their lack of use. I have found the same problem in my sewing kit, the stationery drawer (rubber bands) and even among the sports gear (swimming goggles, elasticised shin pads, support bandages). So with elastic it is truly a case of use it or lose it.
Wednesday – Food. This one is a no-brainer really. Even less perishable food has some sort of used by date. So if you have something in the pantry or freezer that hasn’t been used in a long time find a recipe to use it up on. You never know you might just stumble upon a recipe that will end up in your regular rotation this way.
Thursday – Fabrics. Any item made from light coloured fabric that have been used against your body at some point can be prone to yellowing from the body acids that aren’t completely washed out during the laundering process. Old wedding dresses are a fine example of this. The acids can even perish the fabrics and weaken them. I also find that old sheets that haven’t been used can get quite a rancid smell about them when not washed regularly. So declutter old clothes that you have worn before but now never use and if you have an over abundance of sheets in your linen closet make sure you rotate them on a regular basis.
Friday – Electrical appliances. Like anything else on this list these items will wear out from being used but at least then you will have gotten your money’s worth out of them. Having left electrical items in storage when we moved to America and then coming home to find they no longer worked I know for sure that it is a reality the they don’t like sitting idle for too long.
Saturday – Make-up and medicines (pills, ointments, antiseptic etc). Both these items are made from substances that perish over time. Although medicines will usually have a used by date some cosmetic don’t. Either way you need to do a regular declutter of, what is or what you believe to be, out of date products in your medicine cabinet, your first-aid box and your make-up kit. (Read here for advice on used by dates for make-up)
Sunday – Sunday is reserved for contemplating one particular item of your choice that is proving difficult for you to declutter. Whether that be for sentimental reasons, practical reasons, because the task is laborious or simply unpleasant, or because the items removal requires the cooperation of another person. That last category may mean that the item belongs to someone else who has to give their approval, it could also mean there is a joint decision to be made or it could mean that the task of removing it requires assistance from someone else. There is no need to act on this contemplation immediately, it is more about formulating a plan to act upon or simply making a decision one way or another.
Good luck and happy decluttering
Eco Tip for the Day
Choose products to use and use them up before replacing them with something else. Unless of course you are allergic or they are having some other detrimental effect. Waste is waste no matter what form it comes in and having too much variety on hand is a sure fire way of things getting perished and require throwing out.