I don’t know about you, but my plunger doesn’t really ‘spark joy’ in the way that Marie Kondo, the Japanese organizer with a new Netflix show, defines it. But I’m keeping it and you should too!
My approach is a little different. Keep what is beautiful or useful. And when that changes over time, let them go. Here are some real-life examples of what you can do with hard-to-part-with items.
- When something you thought was beautiful, isn’t anymore. I love to travel and bring home beautiful things, but last year I brought home something that’s sort of tacky and definitely not useful. So what if it’s from Indonesia? I don’t love it so it’s going to the thrift store.
- When someone gives you something you dislike. Once someone has given you something, it’s yours; do with it as you please. That said, when my mother-in-law gave my husband and me a boatload of religious icons, we put them in a box and only brought them out when she came to visit.
- When you stop seeing your beautiful things. Over time, our eyes get bored seeing the same thing over and over. You may have 238 beautiful ceramic turtles but have you really looked at them lately? Try rotating them. Put a quarter of them in a box and switch them out every 3-6 months.
- When something ‘useful’ isn’t getting used. Useful is useless unless it’s in use! You can have a houseful of ‘useful’ things but if you never use them, they are clutter. This goes for ‘organizing tools’ too! See my top 3 organizing tools to avoid.
- When sentiment gets in the way. I kept my Grandmother’s china for years and years. The pattern was a pink floral. It could not have been more opposite from my style. I forced myself to use it once or twice a year, but in my eyes, it wasn’t beautiful. Finally (and only after downsizing to an 800 square foot San Francisco condo) did I decided to liberate it. I gave it to a woman with two young girls. And they LOVED it. I’ll never forget the joy in their eyes when I gave it to them.
Ready to liberate something but you’re not sure where it will go? As a San Francisco-based professional organizer, I come armed with incredible resources and plenty of small-space savvy. Whether you want just a little help or a lot, I can jump-start your process. Check out how I can help you organize, design and move.