I had a call from a lady the other day who was asking me about how to declutter for downsizing. They were moving from the three-bedroom family home that they’d been in for many many years, down to a one bedroom bungalow and were a little bit daunted by the task.
It’s not easy.
I’m not going to pretend it’s easy, because over the years these things have built up over quite a lot of time, we collect, we gather, we just keep bringing stuff into our homes.
One of the first things to look at really is have you got things that belong to someone else?
A lot of people, especially if they’ve had children, will have things for them and maybe hang on to them, and when they initially move out of home, the garage gets full, the loft gets full, with all their kind of belongings. And that’s stuff that you don’t need to keep. It’s not yours so getting those items back to the people that they belong to can be a really good start in getting rid of some of the excess.
Another key is to actually look through the things that you’ve got.
A lot of the time we fill up cupboards and there’s stuff in there and we don’t really revisit, because they’re happy, nothing’s a problem, we might not have that much stuff, but the things that have been in the cupboards are not causing any issues.
This is all stuff that needs tackling at this time.
The reality is you’ve got to reduce the volume quite a lot. So some of those things are going to have to go. Which is not always an easy decision to make, because there tends to be lots of memories tied up with these items. But if you can really focus on what somebody else is gaining, getting it to charity, getting it to local places that you really connect with then the loss will not be as big – it will be easier to part with those items.
It is all about reducing down the volume.
So whereas before you may have had four wardrobes, because you use the wardrobes in another room, where you’re moving to may only have one. Therefore there’s got to be a reduction in volume.
With any of this it’s getting out everything in one go, try and do it by category, so you get out a whole category of items.
For example, coats, look at them and sort them into;
Which ones do I really love?
Which ones are okay?
Which ones do I kind of not really wear because they don’t really fit me very well?
Seeing the overall picture of stuff is really key in this. So try and really sort by category.
Another thing I would say is do try and get help.
Doing it on your own can be really difficult. Especially if it’s been that way for so many years, it’s what you’re used to and thinking about things in a different way can be tricky.
Good luck with your downsizing and I’m sure you’ll be fine.