If you are moving to a smaller space, thinning down your collection of belongings can seem daunting. But you might be surprised to see how many items don’t carry too much meaning and are easily disposed of. There are some items that take up residence that don’t mean all that much to us but we keep because we might need it someday. Downsizing actually provides you with an opportunity to be free of the excess and only surround yourself with the things that really matter. Here are some tips:
- Lifestyle Analysis – First review how your life is going to change after you downsize. If you are retiring, there may be many work-related items that no longer need to clutter your closet! Suits, jackets, shoes, purses, etc that served you in a professional capacity may be the first to go into the donate and sell If you are moving to a warmer climate, perhaps you should rethink your winter wardrobe. Moving to a condo and don’t plan on utilizing your green thumb? Consider your garden and lawn tools and supplies. Entire categories of things can be the first to go.
- Space Analysis – Think about the space and functionality of the rooms you are moving to. If you don’t have a guestroom at your new place, then perhaps you shouldn’t bring that entire room of items. If you are downsizing your kitchen to half of what you have now, then half of what you currently have will need to find another home. Think about your largest furniture pieces as well. Do you have room for a pool table? Also consider scale of furniture – sectionals and large dining room tables may be just too large proportionally for the rooms you will have in your new digs.
- Functionality Analysis – How many pans do you really cook with on a regular basis? How many mixing bowls do you really need at once? How many pairs of socks? So often we keep something around because we perceive that we need it, but you likely only use a few items in your home on a regular basis. When was the last time you made pasta from scratch or used all your towels? Downsizing means choosing, so choose wisely!
- Memorabilia Analysis – This is a tough one because it means choosing among things that are cherished. Yearbooks, photos, letters, keepsakes, children’s artwork, etc all fall into this category. As we get older, this problem becomes more pronounced as we inherit and become stewards of other people’s items. This category of items is just too painful for some people to have to go through and make choices for fear of making a mistake. If this sounds like you, then perhaps your best bet is to get a storage unit and put those items in there. I do recommend that you let someone else know about the unit in the event something happens to you so that these items stay in the family.
Are you overwhelmed by the thought of downsizing? Let’s talk! I would be happy to help get the ball rolling and I also have professional organizers I can call upon to help.