I’ve always been someone that loves throwing things out.
It just always seemed that the more things I owned, the less meaning each individual thing had. When that whole KonMari decluttering method blew up a couple years ago, I was pretty peeved someone was making millions off an idea that seemed intrinsic to me. I know some people buy things to meet an emotional need, but I think I’m more likely to get rid of things if I’m trying to de-stress or work through something.
So how do I end up with so many things I’m willing to part with? Er, poor money management & too many cute ‘trendy’ things for sale are the biggest reasons that spring to mind. Also, there totally is some Pavlovian response to getting free crap – ‘Congratulations you get a free tote bag with your purchase!’ ‘Woohoo I’m totally getting one over on these suckers cos its freeee.’
I’ve sort of developed a ‘carry in, carry out’ policy in regards to what goes in my house – if it’s not something edible or consumable (i.e. food or Lush bath bombs), it either has to replace something I already own or be something I really need & will use frequently. This means I’ve turned down many a free water bottle, tote bag, etc. But it also means I cherish the thoughtful gifts I get, as the act of adding something to my possessions has so much meaning.
I’m currently in a phase of ‘digital decluttering’. I’m making myself go through all documents & photographs on my computer, phone, old flash drives etc and only keeping what I’d really like to look back on (if only I’d called this ‘spark joy’ and copyrighted it 5 years ago sigh..). This look-back is partly what inspired me to finally make the jumpstart on this blog. Currently I have about 5,000 photos to go through, which is far too many for most of them to have any real meaning. Why oh why do I insist on taking 5 nearly identical photographs of EXACTLY the same thing in some attempt that one will be so much more amazing. Part of my new digital ‘carry in, carry out’ policy will be to promptly assess and choose 1 damn picture out of the lot.
To be clear – I’m certainly not perfect. A quick browse of my online shopping history shows a number of things I didn’t really ‘need’ or ended up throwing out without even using (like a bottle of citric acid to make my own bath bombs). I’d also like to mention that for any useful household goods and clothes I do donate! I’m using the term ‘throwing out’ in the general sense, but I donate & recycle what I can, including furniture.