I had a bit of an epiphany over Christmas. It was one of those bolt out of the blue moments that left me wondering why I hadn’t really realised it before; my house is cluttered and it’s cluttering my ability to look ahead to the future.
I’ve never been a minimalist. I enjoy having my home comforts around me. I love having lots of photographs in frames all over the walls, I love candles on the mantel piece, blankets on the sofas and cushions galore on the daybed. All the little things that make a house a home and some. But it’s like a thick fog I can’t see through. And it’s suffocating.
We don’t have a huge amount of storage in our two bedroomed terrace home, we have the usual under the stairs dumping ground and a million and one boxes ‘just in case’ up the loft. We’ve even got ‘stuff’ in storage; camping gear, car seats and pushchairs from what I can recall from memory but to write down an inventory of the things in the lock up would leave my mind at a blank.
Why am I holding on to it all?
My memory is rubbish. I’ll admit it. If I don’t write things down I have a tendancy to forget things; dates when my husband is going to be late home from work, dentist appointments or phone numbers. I just don’t have the ability to retain the information. Is this why I keep everything? So that I can remember it all.
The task at hand is overwhelming. We have so much stuff. We really need to sort it out if my mind is going to be free of the burden of stuff. So I can look to the future without obstacle.
As with every obstacle I face, I have to write down the problem. I have to write a list and a step by step guide on how I’m going to unpick it. I’ve made plans to tackle each room individually and apply the rule of if I’ve not used it within 6 months then it needs to go. It needs to be recycled, or sold, or thrown away if it’s no good or no use to anyone else. I need to be ruthless. I need to sort through the stuff and get it out of the house. Taking some of the fog with it.
The weekends ahead are full of plans to tackle these rooms and I’ve roped in my family to help too. We’ve already finished the kitchen and it feels so good to have made a good start. I just need to carry on and get it done. Of course, you can’t really sort out the house with a child in tow as we all know the phrases that will pop out of their mouths “that’s my favourite” or “I was looking for that!” when they see something that they had forgotten about and haven’t played with for months on end.
The mission is on and I’m hoping it’ll clear the house and the fog. One thing at a time.