When decluttering your home, you need to carefully look at each item and determine if you want to keep it, or if it can be donated, sold, recycled or discarded. As you take a look at these objects you’ve accumulated throughout your life, you may come up with excuses on why you need to keep something. Here are my tips on conquering 5 common excuses about keeping clutter:
“It might be worth something some day!”
Most common household objects very rarely increase in value. Ask yourself how much it is worth to you to have this item take up space in your home for years, not to mention the time spent storing, cleaning and maintaining it so that you might resell it one day.
“It has sentimental value!”
Keeping some sentimental items is fine, but most people need to set limits on how many sentimental items they can keep due to limited space. Limit yourself to a certain number of sentimental items and carefully curate what you keep. For example, if you have 100 objects that remind you of a family member, narrow it down to your 5 or 10 favorites and declutter the rest.
“I might need it someday!”
If you can determine exactly when you will need an item, definitely keep it. If you are just holding on to an item because you may hypothetically need it someday, think about how much space the item is taking up in your home, or how much time you spend storing or cleaning and maintaining it, and then reconsider if you need it. Also, if this is something that is readily available and inexpensive, you may be better off getting rid of the item you currently own and repurchasing it later if you find that you need it again.
“It was a gift!”
A gift has served its purpose when the gift-giver has experienced the joy of finding and giving this item to the gift-receiver. You will alway have the memory of receiving that gift whether you keep it or not. If you find the gift is not something you use or need, remember when decluttering a gift you are not throwing away the memory of the person who gave it to you.
“It was expensive!”
Keep in mind that many things are expensive, but that the money was spent when you originally purchased the item. This item may be a sunk cost, but holding onto the item won’t make that money come back to you, unless it truly is a valuable object that you can resell.