Mini Mission Monday ~ What can I find.

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.

The inspiration behind this week’s mini missions is stuff in my house that I would still like to declutter. Why haven’t I done it yet you may ask. Well I will explain that below, along side the appropriate mission. As I write this I only have a few items in mind to declutter, so part of the inspiration is to force me to take a good look around to find enough items to complete this post. Perhaps I had better resume my work on our inventory, as I am sure I will find plenty of inspiration, being up that close and personal with my stuff.

Monday – Declutter something that you keep just because someone made it for you. I have a knitted knee rug that my mother made for me, but I can’t use it because it makes me itch and sneeze. I asked the kids if they wanted it but they didn’t so I suppose the next option is to donate it.

Tuesday – Declutter some wall art. I have a set of eight canvases with photos attached from trips we have made to Europe. We have more than enough wall art so I offered these to my daughter last week and she said she would take them. She is coming to dinner tonight so now is as good a time as any to take them down off the wall and give them to her.

Wednesday – Declutter a dust collector that someone gave you. I have a little elephant pie funnel that was given to me by a very dear friend who has now passed away. I remember her often enough without needing to keep this item as a reminder. Also I have seen this exact item sell for in excess of $100 on eBay and wouldn’t mind a piece of that action. 😉

Thursday – Declutter something that came free with something else but you have never used it. My son’s current motorbike came with a touring bag which he has never used nor expressed any desire to use. My daughters partner however has a need for one of these, so it seems logical and practical to pass it on to him since he will get good use out of it.

Friday – Declutter some pantry or refrigerator items that you used once for a recipe but have not found a use for since. I think the ingredients, that tonight I will pass on to my daughter when she comes for dinner, may actually have been bought by her while she was living here recently. Of course I enjoyed her cooking for me, but she is more experimental with her cooking than I could be bothered with, so she is more likely to use these items than I.

Saturday – Declutter a sentimental item. I made a cross-stitch sampler for my daughter when she was a baby. It is still in the cylinder that I stored it in while I was making it. I have never framed it so, aside from when I was making it, it has never seen the light of day. I asked my daughter if she wanted it but she didn’t. I considered just throwing it in the garbage but that didn’t sit well with me. I will donate it to the thrift shop and see if anyone cares to buy it.

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

Drink tap water in preference to carbonated beverages. It doesn’t take a genius to work out how much better that is for the environment. Your waistline and your teeth will thank you for it as well.

It matters not how fast I go, I hurry faster when I’m slow

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About Colleen Madsen

Colleen is the founder of 365 Less Things and lives in Newcastle, Australia.


  1. Some good ideas here Colleen. I am doing our inventory as you know and this gives me some new ways to look at what I am working through. I have a drawer full of stuff now to take to the Goodwill so need to get that done too.

    • Hi Deb J, it is getting to the point for me where I don’t need to take much to the thrift shop. That isn’t only because my decluttering has slowed somewhat but because it is usually useful or more treasured stuff left which my kids are usually happy to take off my hands.

      • I’m sure I could probably find someone who would take the stuff off my hands. I just don’t want to have to ask around or hold onto it. Plus, I’m afraid I have too many friends who would take it but not need it. I don’t want to help with their clutter. Grin. It’s great that you have your kids to give it to and they can really use it.

  2. Colleen the majority of your examples are sentimental items and it’s good to see the practical reasons behind the decision to donate them. I used to have a problem with sentimental items but have learned like you did with your friend’s gift of the pie funnel that I don’t need “things” to remind me of all the loved ones I have lost.

    • Hi Megan S, that is an interesting observation. I guess I do keep items just for their sentimental value after all. Although the throw rug has another reason for staying this long. It links the pieces for white furniture across the majority of dark furniture pieces in this living space. However being draped over the back of one of our arm chairs it also gets in the way when we have guests and I often find it has slipped off onto the floor.

  3. Good mini missions. The first episode of “Hoarders: Buried Alive” aired here last week and I finally got to watch it on the weekend. Wow. Apparently I missed the UK version that screened last year so this was the first time I’d seen one of these programmes.

    It fired me into action and a bunch of stuff went down the shute at the big donation bins in the supermarket car park, and a small pile of stuff useful to her kids was offered and accepted by my sis-in-law, just waiting to be picked up at the halfway point here at my work.

    Tonight I want to work on my desk, it seems to have attracted a lot of random stuff over the last week or two.

  4. This past Saturday I donated a handmade item to some friends’ garage sale. I’d kept it because it was made just for me and was beautifully made (and useful)–a small piece of furniture. However, in the last few years the relative who made it for me has been behaving in ways that are hurtful. And the hurt part finally outweighed the beautiful and useful part, so that every time I looked at it I felt bad. Today I feel very happy to be free of that item and even better than it contributed nicely to the cause for which the garage sale was held. It does make me curious as to why I felt better having it benefit a known (to me) cause rather than dropping it at Goodwill…

    • Hi Vicki K, no one needs items that contribute to any reason for sadness. And if you later you patch it up with your relative the item would probably only remind you or this sad time. So best you did get rid of the item.

      Like you I find it more rewarding to send the things I am less keen to be rid of to a good home. Either by selling them and recouping some of my loss or by giving them to a friend of family member.

  5. Last week I avoided coming home with a lot of emotional clutter. I was helping my siblings clean out our Father’s house after our StepMum had died. It was not the threats made by Colleen and my Hubby NOT TO BRING STUFF HOME that stopped me with filling my car with stuff. It was rational thoughts. There was a tea cup and plate I admired, I could have easily bought it home. My Mum won it in a cooking competition many years ago. We put $20 on it , and it was snapped up at the garage sale. I am happy that someone else liked it, sharing the enjoyment is better than holding onto something.
    I will be decluttering my wardrobe this week and packing to go to Germany. I am going to try and fit all that I need into a small suitcase and a back pack. I don’t think I will have a problem. How easy is it to pack light and wash clothes often?
    After being away for a week , there was a lot of. ‘Mystery’ items in the fridge. These were disposed of and I will identify what is in the freezer before I depart next week.
    Having less to worry about is so easy and makes life more enjoyable 🙂 cheers

    • Hi Wendy F, sure it was me terrifying you that stopped you from bringing stuff home. Don’t try to make other excuses. 😉 No really, good for you leaving it behind.

      As for that holiday wardrobe, I challenge you to take only the backpack. That is what I will be doing for my seven week romp around Britain. You have a base camp so you should be able to manage with less. 😉

  6. I have an eyesore which would fit right into the Wednesday mini mission. Right when I get home, I will put it in with the bags which will go to goodwill

    • Good for you Dymphy. And it is good riddance by the sounds of it.

      • I have finally overcome the sentimental grip. At the end of the day they are only things and if they are not used why hang on to them. I have read suggestions that you photograph them and keep the photograph. Personally that seems bonkers to me and adds to photo clutter! I have plenty of memories in my mind I don’t need something physical to remind me of people and times I have loved.

        • I took a photo of an item I liked at my Dad’s house. A useless 1970’s teak tea trolley. I loved it! But what a totally useless item it was. It is a lot easier to delete the digital photo than the real thing Gillie 😉

        • Well actually Gillie, it was a sentimental item, but not for me. That is the weird part of it.

  7. Great mini missions this week, as always, Colleen. You have given us many things to think about this week.