Tuesday, July 1, 2014

40 Bags :: "just in case"

"Unless it’s near impossible to replace, and unless you use it all the time, there’s really no need to hold on to something just in case—especially when that “just in case” almost never actually happens." -- Tsh Oxenreider, The Art of Simple
I came across this quote a week and half into this round of 40 Bags and it resonated with me. Originally, I thought this time around I would start with some "easy" spaces and tackle the bigger ones after I had found some momentum, but with this quote as my guide, I have been able to cross a couple of the harder spaces early on.

First up: the storage room. We have basements in Michigan and everything that doesn't have a real home ends up here. We don't have tons and tons of extras but this space is a clutter magnet and I cringe a little whenever I have to walk into this room. This time through, I tried to be ruthless: if it didn't have a use or a spot somewhere else in the house, and it wasn't seasonal, why continue to hold onto it "just in case"? 

Within about 15 minutes, I had a pretty big pile. Within an hour, I had some empty shelves...in the storage room. Some of it I sent straight to the donate pile, some of it I snapped quick photos of and posted on a local Facebook garage sale site (most of it sold quickly...a little extra cash never hurts...and what didn't sell within a week went out the door to be donated).

Wherever the stuff ended up, I really don't care, because the "after" space looks like this and that's good enough for me. Good-bye leftover picture frames, outdated home decor, beaten up bags.

As an added bonus, I found a new home for my gift wrap (I love gift wrap!) outside of the sad, dark (although now clutter-free) storage room in a nearly empty hall closet just around the corner.

Sending our "just in case" items out the door -- either to a new home or to a local thrift shop -- and the junk into the trash or recycling bin is exactly what the 40 Bags Challenge is about. It's like lifting a weight off my shoulders, each time I clear out a space, to know I'm no longer in charge of managing/maintaining/storing stuff we don't really use or need.
"There is indescribable freedom to owning only what you truly, really, honestly need. I’ll take that beauty over the risk of “but what if?” any day." -- Tsh Oxenreider, The Art of Simple

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