We like to think that everything we own is worth keeping, but the truth is that a lot of the stuff we keep is cluttering up our homes.
We’re going to look at a few ways you can know what to get rid of and what to keep the next time you set out to clean your home.
Examine Sentimental Value
It’s true that nearly everything we cling to has some sentimental value, but if you want to de-clutter your home, you’re going to have to take a hard look at what you truly can’t part with as opposed to what you cling to because it brings back good memories. The trick is to rate items based on how much sentimental value they have. Once you’ve done this, you can better choose what to get rid of and what to keep.
Affection or Obligation
When you’re examining items for sentimental value, it’s good to ask for each item “am I keeping this because I feel obligated to or because it truly does bring back good memories?” If your aunt gave you a lamp that doesn’t fit your decor, you might be hanging on to it because you think it would hurt her feelings to get rid of it. On the other hand, if that lamp has been in the family for generations, and was handed down to you before she passed, it might hold greater value to you.
Consider getting rid of those things you keep purely out of obligation.
The Glory Days
Personal items that help us remember times in our lives where we excelled at sports or academics are things we tend to cling to. Trophies, awards, certificates and such items can fill rooms. The trick here is to keep those items that represent real accomplishments. The clay ashtray you made in 7th grade probably doesn’t fit the bill here.
Hang on to What’s More Special
As we’ve mentioned, it’s good to hang on to those items that represent landmark times in our lives. Things like items from your wedding or the birth of your first child are nice to keep around as are items that have been handed down through generations. Ask yourself for each item you’re hanging on to “What special moment does this represent in my life?” If it’s something you’d be proud to take out, show off, and talk about, chances are, it represents something meaningful in your life.
Keep Decorative Items to a Minimum
We all like to go through stores when they’re having sales and pick up little knick-knacks to decorate our homes, but the trouble is those knick-knacks add up to a lot of clutter. Keeping our decorative items to a minimum makes the house cleaner, neater, and more modern looking.
Join the Electronic Age
A lot of those old photos, drawings, and art we cling to can be scanned and saved to a computer or uploaded to a photo sharing app. This lets you keep all those precious memories and allows you to free your home of photos cluttering up the walls and coffee tables. You can also check out these easy cleaning tips to do everyday that’ll keep your place clean.
This post comes from the TODAY Parenting Team community, where all members are welcome to post and discuss parenting solutions. Learn more and join us! Because we're all in this together.