Clutter is very much about being keener to acquire than to let go. We acquireÂ things we need, or more likely just want, but once their usefulness to, or novelty for, us has expired we hang on to them. I feel that there are fourÂ main reasons for why we hang on to this clutterÂ and they are, laziness, confusion, fear and indifference.
Laziness of course refers to having the stuff there, being aware that it is a problem but refusing to deal with it because you just don’t want to make the effort. The problem is this is that while you are “ignoring” it it is gnawing away at your peace of mind. So best to just get on with the job. It doesn’t have to be difficult which is what 365 Less Things is all about.
Confusion is the problem of not knowing how to responsibly get rid of the useful yet unwanted stuff that we know we need to get rid of. To help with this issue here is a link to one of my guides on how to Recycle or Donate you unwanted stuff. There are no doubt other options open to you in your area but at least this guide will give you some clues or maybe even get your imagination flowing on more novel ways of finding new homes for your stuff.
Fear is all about thinking you might need it some day and keeping it just in case. Or because we fearÂ we are letting go of something sentimental and that doing so is somehow an affront to our history or to those who may have given an item to us.Â Use this link which will send you to a list of posts with the subject of Personal Attachment. These posts might help you let go of some of those attachments to stuff.Â
And indifference is being aware that you have clutter but don’t mind, don’t care or even like it that way. It can also be that you don’t even notice because you like being surrounded by stuff. And that is fare enough if that is how you like to live. However I don’t suppose you are here reading my blog posts if that is truly your attitude. But I will mention here that constantly acquiring new stuff or even hoarding stuff that could be useful to someone else is not a very environmentally friendly approach to taking care of the planet we live on.Â
Which leads me to the issue of acquiring stuff. The clutter would not build up if we stopped bringing it in in the first place. Â I have said it before and I will say it again, and again and again, that one of the best thing that happened to me during my mission to declutter was losing the desire to acquire. It is not only good for your finances, andÂ better for the environment, it is also a fool proof way of achieving your decluttering goals sooner and remaining uncluttered once you reach your goal.
I am not saying that I never acquire anything but I sure am very discerning about what I do acquire. I would rather go without than end up with an item that doesn’t live up to the functionÂ I bought it for. I never buy anything on the spur of the moment and usually what I do acquire is to replace something that is worn out that I use all the time. I buy very few material gifts for people, I prefer to buy consumable itemsÂ or give experience gifts or the gift of my time in some way. And for those who insist on buying gifts for me, I request that they are consumable.
It is amazing how freeing it can be when one overcomes the desire to constantly acquire. I am amused but mostly appalled when I see the ridiculous advertising slogans and enticements companies use to con you into buying their products.
It is also nice to own mostly things that are useful to you or beautiful. I get so much satisfaction when I use the items in my house that have proved their worth and the space they take up in my home.
So consider your acquiring habits if you are truly wanting to set and reach a level of unclutteredness within you home.