Nobody who knows me well would disagree that I’m borderline OCD, and really detest clutter.

So, it’s unfortunate that I also find it quite hard to throw things away. That unusual charger, whose original purpose I can’t remember might, just might, turn out to the the exact thing I need, one day. Hey, it has happened – honestly – I just can’t remember when, right now.

I’ve been trying to change my attitude to stuff. I try not to think of things in terms of their value as measured by how much they might have cost in the first place. Instead, I’m trying to look at my stuff and think, “How much is this thing costing me right now?” The answer is never “nothing,” because the space a thing occupies is valuable.

Like a lot of Londoners, I live in a small apartment, and space is at a premium. So, any item I own which isn’t providing me a genuine benefit (or that won’t do so in the foreseeable future) is just too expensive to own. It takes up space that could be storing something which is actually useful, and if I ever move house again, I’ll have to pack the useless object in a box, transport the box and unpack it again, all with no benefit to me.

I’ve been using mydailytodolist.org to try and help. One of my daily todo items is “Get rid of something.” So far, I’ve been doing this for around 90 days, and it’s deeply satisfying watching the list of things I’ve gotten rid of grow gradually longer (yes, I keep a list. OCD, remember?)

It’s getting to the point where I’m having to look pretty hard to find something, each day, that I genuinely don’t need to keep.

If you’re in a similar situation, I definitely recommend it as a technique to help declutter your life. A huge mountain of stuff to sort through is pretty daunting. I’ve meant to tackle “stuff mountains” many times, and always managed to find some excuse not to. But, picking just one thing a day and putting it in the recycling, or a bag to take to charity or, as a last resort, in the bin, is really easy. Do it every day, and it’s surprising how quickly that stuff mountain shrinks.

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