Too much stuff makes my brain feel fuzzy. Decision overload is a real thing. When I accumulate too many knick-knacks it makes me feel cranky and confused. They need dusting and I won’t get to that.

My sister said it perfectly the other day “it you don’t use it, it’s not a frypan, it’s an obstacle”. Too many things we own are just obstacles. They’re taking up storage space and mental space and too much is just too much!

Reasons to let it go

  • you don’t like it or value it
  • someone else needs it (even if you don’t know them)
  • you have to move it to get to the things you do use
  • every time you look at it you feel bad
  • it’s one more delayed decision (decision overload)
  • if you get rid of it you won’t have to think about it again
  • re gifts – it’s the thought that counts (keep the love, discard the knick-knack)

Easy ways to declutter

  • 5 things in 5 minutes – quickly throw 5 things in a bag to donate
  • 10 minutes a day for a week – then take the bag to donate
  • re-gift it to someone who might like it
  • read Courtney Carver’s blog Be More With Less for lots of ideas

Life is just easier if you let some stuff go. Maybe that includes letting go of old mental stuff. I read a wonderful piece which compared forgiveness to letting some things out of the backpack you carry. Lightening the load, piece by piece.

Let go of the mental clutter

  • How would you feel if you let go of some old resentments?
  • What could you forgive today?
  • What memory do you want to drop, never to pick up again?
  • What story isn’t working for you?

So what’s simplifying about? It’s about getting rid of the things that don’t matter so you can focus on the things that do. None of us are cheerful when we’re overwhelmed. None of us are entirely present when there is too much unfinished business.

What matters?

Maybe you prefer to start with what matters. Instead of choosing things to release, maybe you would rather choose what you most want to keep.

  • What are your favourite physical things?
  • What are your best, most treasured memories?
  • What activities do you love?
  • What feels really good when you do it?
  • Who do you love to spend time with?
  • What values are precious to you?
  • What places does your soul love?

We each have our own lives. They happen to us and they’re ours to choose. Maybe you like yours full and rich, colourful and demanding. Maybe you prefer it calm and peaceful as a quiet cup of tea.

The point is not how it looks to others but just that it feels the way you want it to feel. We’re all different. Simplifying is about getting rid of what doesn’t belong in your life. Sending things back to their true home and keeping yours reflective of the real you.