Since I’ve probably not been to your house, it’s a bit difficult to tell where you keep stuff, so this is just kind of a guess – maybe you even have a “library”, “den”, “family room” or “study”.
It feels nice to have a book collection, it does. But we got honest with ourselves and knew that there was zero reason for us to keep all those books mostly just sitting on our shelves.
We kept a few favorites that we actually use, and got rid of everything else.
Whenever we buy anything new these days it’s all digital copies, anyway, so that it fits better into our traveling lifestyle, and there’s always the library as well.
Even if you do want to hold onto your books, there are probably quite a few you wouldn’t really miss.
Do you keep old magazines, telling yourself you’re going to re-read them some time or make craft projects out of them??? Because unless you actually have it scheduled on your calendar, you’re not going to. Stacks of magazines are not very conducive to organizing an office or living room you know.
Maybe you have some sitting around that you were going to keep a certain recipe or article from – tear it out, or better yet, just take a picture of it and get rid of the magazine.
And even if you someday decide that you really need old magazines for something, you can find some pretty quickly at libraries, garage sales, thrift stores, Craigslist, recycling at the post office, other people’s trash, etc.
Just kidding about the last one, unless you really do have a magazine emergency ?
This is one of the areas that’s still a bit hard for me.
I love all things creative, and my daughter is a girl after my own heart. It’s hard for us to not look at everything as something we can DIY with, somehow, someday.
All it’s gotten us up to this point, however, is the equivalent of crafting junk drawers.
I fully intend to start doing a lot more hands-on creative stuff with her, but we’re going to get serious about what we make and get the right tools for the job, and our rule is that we have to have a specific use in mind if we keep scraps.
If you don’t have a weekly, or at least monthly, crafting time where you use those supplies you have sitting around, you’re just kidding yourself.
Planners Etc. – Notebooks, binders, folders… filled largely with good intentions and not much else.
If you have them, make yourself actually use them, or just get rid of them.
We had old planners, calendars, you name it. They sat, largely untouched, in drawers and cupboards.
I went through a bunch of old notebooks and journals and took out the pages with stuff I wanted to keep and gave the remainder of them to our daughter to fill with her drawings.
We haven’t missed any of these things in the slightest.
What do you do with your old cell phone when you upgrade?
Maybe you even have an old landline phone laying around!
Then what about walkman, discman, etc. etc…
Old cords, headphones that don’t work anymore…
Since we paid more for some of these things and sometimes have fond memories of them, somehow we often just chuck them in a drawer, cupboard, or box somewhere instead of freeing them to move on to a better place.
Sometimes the problem is that we just don’t know what to do with them, so it takes intention to make something happen.
Aside from the usual garage sale, secondhand store, Craigslist, Facebook trades, etc., there is also the Amazon Trade-In program, which is definitely worth checking out.
We only ever had a small collection of movies, but it used to be almost like a hobby of David’s to collect music, so we used to have quite a stack of CDs.
Now we no longer purchase physical versions of either of these things, in favor of keeping everything in one place and accessible to all of us at any time, even when traveling.
Even if you don’t want to go digital, you probably have old stuff laying around that you no longer use. Surely not VHS or cassette tapes, though, right?
Amazon Trade-In may also be a great place to get rid of some of this stuff.
You might be a family game night family, in which case you probably get a lot more use out of your games than much of the world, but if not, you probably have some you could easily part with.
Many games are a great thing to borrow – rather than needing to own them all for the few times a year they are used.
Maybe you could even have an agreement with friends about who will keep what game and bring it to game night…
This could encompass a lot of variety.
We used to have 3 staplers, for example, just because they piled up.
Perhaps you have a handful of scissors, which is something often nice to have more than one, but one or two good pairs is better than a bunch of dull, bent pairs scattered around the house… just saying.
Check through your supplies and see what you have unnecessary duplicates of – multiple rulers are quite common, but realistically very unnecessary.
Pens are another easy one. I’m willing to bet you have as many pens that don’t work sitting around as those that do…
Don’t forget to take into account those things that you’ve had forever just in case, and never actually used.
Do you have a file drawer dedicated to manuals for appliances and whatnot? Or better yet, are they scattered around in various parts of the house?
How many of us moved into our current home with random stuff accumulated over the years and just stuck it somewhere without bothering to consider whether we still actually needed, or even liked, it?
A vase here, a figurine there…
Consider how each of these things contribute to – or detract from – the beauty of your space.
It might be time to move on. Don’t forget that you can take a picture of something which use has expired but you want to keep the memory.
The likelihood that you have extraneous furniture is rather high.
We, for just one example, had a baker’s rack sitting in our living room for years just because we had found a good deal on it and figured we could use it.
And we did… sure, the shelf held a few books (that we didn’t need either), but it was largely a flat surface to collect junk. And the drawer in it was apparently a good place for our kids to stash random stuff.
Evaluate why you have the pieces you have. Are they serving a relevant purpose? Do you even like them, or were they just a good deal that you forced to work in your space?
Ready to tackle more? Check out our lists for other parts of your house gathered in one place as well as a free printable cheatsheet here – 40+ Things You Can Get Rid of Without Even Missing
*Photos from Pixabay
Conquer clutter. Crush chaos. Create clarity. Change the culture.