I think I’ve mentioned it enough over the past few weeks that my word of the year is “less”. Our first adventure with less had nothing to do with decluttering, but more so with diet. It was a questionable success, but you live and you learn. I haven’t blogged about it yet, but I’ve definitely been cutting down on items we own and exploring how to live with less. There are several items that immediately pop out as being excessive as well as a few things I had never thought of before.
Duh. I think when people start clearing out their homes, the first place they go is the closet. There’re only seven days in a week, and I’m pretty sure you don’t go through your entire wardrobe and only do laundry once of a month. Do the hanger test and see what clothes you wear and what you don’t. Fun fact, I secretly did this to Carl to prove a point. I hung the clothes he wore differently than the ones he didn’t. After a month or so it becomes clear what clothes are your favorites. (And why you don’t need a million shirts coughCarlcough.)
It’s amazing how many towels accumulate. I think it’s one of those items ‘you can always use more of’, but really, do you need that many towels? Donate some to your local animal shelter, or cut them up to replace another item later on this list.
This is another item that accumulates. Going from one small kitchen to no kitchen, to one with adequate (yet still small) storage has shown me that I really don’t need that many cooking items. I mean, how many pots and pans can you really fit on top of a stove at once anyways? Plus, more dishes means more to wash.
This is one area where I don’t need to do any purging….but I have seen some terrifying Tupperware drawers in my life. I’m crazy about keeping our Tupperware drawer insanely organized. We have just enough to store what we need and nothing more. How many container do you have? Better yet, how many do you have with easy to find lids?
T-shirts are one of those free bonus items everyone loves, but never uses. I have so many shirts from college it’s shameful. I have t-shirts for dorms I never lived in and events I never attended. Sure, there’s sentimental attachment to some of them, but a majority were free and you probably didn’t even technically “earn”.
Plastic grocery bags
Stop collecting them. I know you think you’ll use them. And yes they do come in handy for small bags of trash and random vomit occurrences, but they aren’t worth the waste. I’ll save you an environmental speech, mostly because I’m just as guilty as the next person, but put some reusable grocery bags in your car and get in the habit of using them.
I’m not here to judge, but I know you have makeup you never wear anymore. A lot of it is probably so old it should never go near your face anyways. Just throw it away. Yes, it’s a beautiful lipstick color and yes it cost you money, but it’s gross now. It’s not worth the germs.
Again, they produce a lot of waste. My biggest thing about them is a kitchen rag works just as well. Not to mention it’s cheaper in the long run. This is where those extra towels come into play (or extra t-shirts). Keep two bins under the sink, one with clean rags and one for dirty ones. Once the dirty bin is full, throw them in the wash and you’re good to go.
I haven’t bought real laundry detergent in over two years. I made my own (here’s the recipe) and I’ve never looked back. It took thirty minutes to make and lasted years.
Shoes and accessories
You have too many. I have too many. They’re like t-shirts, you somehow keep accumulating more without ever getting rid of them. I know every person has their “thing” that they like to have a lot of. Carl has a thing for steins. But like every collectible, you have to pick and choose and know when to let go. If shoes or jewelry is your collection of choice, have high taste and a critical eye.
What do you need less of?
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