Saturday, January 01, 2005

Eliminating Clutter

When we got out the Christmas decorations this year I found the most appalling thing I had ever seen. For some unknown and probably obsessive-compulsive reason, I found a box filled with ornaments that have broken over the years stored with my Christmas decorations. These ornaments don't have any special meaning to me at all, some of them I actually didn't like when we bought them. Just the same, I have packed them up each year and stored them away like a stupid pack rat, I suppose thinking that some day I would fix them. in 20 years I hadn't attempted to fix one of them. This was a real wake up call to me. This year is the year I break free.

I resolve this year to get rid of all of the clutter in my life. I am going to let go of all of those things I keep around because some day I might need them. All they really do is clutter up my life and make things much more complicated in the here and now.

I resolve to throw out every lid I have stashed in the lid drawer, because I can't quite remember what it goes to and am afraid that if I throw it away, then I will find the container and be left without a lid. I resolve to go lidless in the future, or better yet, when I do find the container I will throw that out as well.

I resolve to throw out every unmatched sock in my laundry room, which I keep in the hopes that someday its errant mate will reappear as if by magic. With a family as big as ours that can become a big BIG pile of unmatched socks. I would rather have the empty space than the big pile.

I resolve to give away or sell all of {gulp} well some of my books. When I was younger my favorite thing to do was to browse used bookstores and yard sales for books by author's I liked. I told myself that these books were so hard to find, even in libraries anymore that I had to keep all of them. Now I find that I have shelf after dusty shelf of books that no one, not even me will ever actually read again. Maybe I can get myself to give away or sell half of my collection. Especially as now that I am in Gradual School I seemed to acquire ten or twelve new books each semester.

I resolve to eliminate any piece of clothing I haven't worn in a year. No more keeping those jeans until I lose ten pounds and they fit again. No more thinking that that classic style will come back again, and I will get some more use out of that lovely cowl neck sweater. (Hey, just think how hip and happening I would be this season if I had kept all of those darn leg warmers I wore in the early 80's). I will only keep clothes that fit AND that I actually wear, everything else goes off to charity.

Lastly, I resolve to eliminate the paper clutter I have amassed over my adulthood. Why do I feel the need to keep gas bills from 1992? Why do I feel as though I would be hurting my angel children if I don't keep every single picture they ever made in grade school? I don't even want to think about all of the paperwork I have generated since the start of gradual school. I am going to make some time really soon to determine which things I should save and which can be thrown away. Good-bye bulging file cabinets.

This may take a really long time, and a lot of tears, but I resolve to do it. By next year I will be so organized I will be able to do my taxes for 2005 on January 1, 2006. Well maybe I will wait a few weeks, but I will be organized and ready to do it then.

Just watch me.


1 comment:

Ladybug said...

Great read. Now feel more guilty about all my inner and outer clutter that I keep saying will go. Books oh oh by the score. Wishing you a good year ;)