Both of my parents were hoarders. Not anything like those TV shows you can watch, but there was definitely some chaos and mess going on. Mom never threw anything. And I recall when I was a teenager I chucked out a black bag full of rubbish only to catch her going through it and keeping things (a Bon Jovi keyring and broken pineapple keyring spring to mind). She was also keeping some of my old clothes even though she was about 4 dress sizes larger than me.
And dad liked to hoard too. He had a whole wardrobe full of books which he’d bought before I was born and yet I never saw him reread any of them.
So I’ve never been keen on clutter and always considered myself as one of those people who don’t. So why then is it that I will have a good sort out every 6 months and soon those areas are filled with crap again?
I think without realising it I would sort out my cupboards by taking everything out and replacing most things. Things that were possibly sentimental but never being used. So of course they were taking up valuable room and when I’d be using items I needed, it would all get mixed up and create a mess (even hidden away in a cupboard it would drive me crazy).
I cleared out my kitchen about a month ago and threw out a couple of items. Yesterday I had a real good look at it. And it dawned on me how much stuff I never used. So I went through it all thoroughly, this time removing everything I never use.
A whole cupboard full of cups that are never touched. An old frying pan than doesn’t work very good, plastic cups from a party a few years ago. Plastic storage containers with missing lids. A whiskey decanter that I bought 23 years ago, it made me feel all grown up and I used it twice.
I could go on.
So I got rid of so much stuff, and realising the error of my ways I realise now that I will no longer hang on to things if they aren’t used and don’t bring me joy.
Look around your home. Pick up an item and ask yourself how often do you use it? Do you need it? Does it bring you joy? If yes then put it in the appropriate room so that you can find it easily when you need it next. If not, can you give it to charity, ask if friends need it, recycle or throw it?