Have you noticed that as we get more palatial homes with huge multiple garages and also awesome second homes.that we are also renting more storage lockers? We have become a culture focused on "things" and the truth is we don't know what to with the over flow. Closets are full, basements, garages and attics are full and most of us really don't have a clue when we start to look for something.where we put it. To make matters worse, our kids move away and leave us their stuff. Downsizing is the next step and it can be an art form.
It's for those of us that are tired of going in circles looking for an item we know we possess only to have to give up and go out and buy another one because we can't find it. Enough is enough. Actually it's too much! When we get fed up, that's a good sign. That's where we need to be to be able to look seriously at the downsizing Downsizing is best done room by room. A good rule of thumb with clothing is to look at our needs and then look at our closets with a jaundiced eye.
If we were going on an extended business/pleasure trip that would include several climates, what would we take.given an eight-suitcase control? Use two suitcases for each season. The sort goes something like this: Pile 1 is for the keepers. Pile 2 goes to the thrift Store. Pile 3 is heading for the dump.
This may take quite a while because Pile 1 may have to be renegotiated several times to be able to stay within the eight-suitcase limit. Linen closets, kitchen cupboards and bathroom cabinets can be approached in a similar fashion. Instead of the extended trip analogy think about people who live on a boat. What would be needed for six months? What should be tossed? The rest goes to the thrift store. Garages can be downsized, too. A good plan is to wonder who might use the item "regularly" instead of keeping it because we might need it "sometime".
A man I know who owns a storage locker tells me that after people have paid him rent for months and sometimes even years, many eventually toss 90% of the stuff because they have learned to live comfortably without it. The truth is this: we aren't our stuff. When it gets to be a problem.it's not an asset.
Less stuff can be freeing. Life can be simpler. How would it feel to have a totally empty closet along with a few unused drawers, just for the heck of it? Whee!.
Luise Volta's life has included careers in nursing, teaching pre-school, interior design, Real Estate sales, insurance adjusting, and dairy herd testing. Visit for Home and Garden.