Okay gals and you few guys that read here. I’ve got the itch to pitch. Not just in the spring but all year round. It feels great, I stay on top of the clutter in my home and my house can breathe! Here’s what I don’t understand. The annual urge to purge. I look back over all the things I’ve decluttered over the past year week by week and think to myself how overwhelming that would have been if I’d done it all at one time. Each week on Instagram I share my purge pile that I drop off at our local thrift store each Wednesday. Why Wednesday? Our thrift store is only open Wednesday and Saturday and usually Saturday’s we are busy doing other things. So Wednesday it is. I make my drop off and then I check out what is new in the store. I share my piles in hopes of inspiring others to also get purge happy :)
Here’s 6 steps I recommend to help you too get the itch to pitch!
1. Recognize that purging is for everyone
I’ve gotten a few comments on my purge pictures wondering how someone with such an organized home could have so much to purge week after week. And here’s the thing. I have an organized home because I do purge week after week. Purging is not just for the disorganized. Regular purging is for everyone so whether you think you need it or not, you do. Life doesn’t stand still and we don’t live in bubbles so stuff is naturally going to be a part of our lives. It’s only a problem if we allow it to be.
2. Set yourself up for success
Regular purging needs to have somewhere to collect or you’ll just move clutter from one area of your home to clutter up another. That’s discouraging and highly demotivating if you ask me. You need to create for yourself a donation station somewhere in your home. Grab yourself a cardboard box or a laundry basket and put it somewhere you can easily access. The easier you make this for yourself, the better success you’ll have at actually using it.
3. Do it regularly even if you don’t feel like it
This goes for any habit you are trying to introduce….the more you do it, the easier and more natural it will become. At the beginning you will need to push yourself, set reminders, have someone hold you accountable but I promise you it does get easier especially as you exercise your decision making muscle. Make it a daily goal to add at least three things to your donation station.
4. Consider carefully your stuff disposal strategy
There is a very good reason I go weekly to the thrift store to donate my stuff. My donation station isn’t that big and I don’t have a lot of extra space in my home to collect things I no longer use or love. I know many people want to hang on to their stuff to sell at a garage sale one day or sell on Craigslist or somewhere similar to make a few bucks. And there is nothing wrong with that, provided you actually do it. Most people never find the time so stuff just sits there, in a perfectly good space that could be used for so much more. Should I mention the number of people who don’t park in their garages because of the stuff they are accumulating in there for a garage sale that may or may not ever happen. Not to mention all the time it takes to put a garage sale on. It’s crazy! If I held on to all my weekly purges like you see in the pictures above, I’d need a whole extra room to store it all. Instead I give to our local thrift store where all the proceeds go directly to purchasing new equipment for our hospital. That makes me feel pretty good! And in the US you can actually get a tax deduction for your thrift store donations. Here’s how to do it.
5. Invite the whole family to the purge party
Now a party of one isn’t much of a party. Invite the whole family to party with you and see how much fun you can have. Make it a competition to see who can collect the most. Let everyone know how the donation station works and to feel free to make a deposit to it anytime they want. And whatever you do, don’t second guess what your kids put into it. The younger they learn this skill the better!
6. When your house begins to breathe, so will you!
Last week I wrote about giving your home the space it needs to breathe. When your house begins to feel lighter, you will as well as a result. Tension will leave your shoulders, you will be able to think and relax and even sleep better. When you experience this awesomeness you will be so motivated to keep it going. Do it!
Clutter and chaos don’t have to be the norm in your home. The best way to fight these two power houses is with order and organization and it all begins with the itch to pitch! Now go do it! And then come back and tell me what the first thing to go is?
Need more motivation? These posts may help: