Wednesday, September 1, 2010

We've Only Just Begun!

With my husband being out of work we are needing to sell what we can to live on and reduce debt until he can find a job or decide what he wants to be when he grows up!  What a great opportunity we have to downsize and get rid of STUFF and reduce our debt at the same time!!  So we are digging in with all we have got to sell the most we can this weekend.  YIKES!  My husband came up with the idea this afternoon, August 31st, and 2 days from now is the yard sale, that is a scary situation!  I usually prepare in advance for things like this and now I can't prepare I just have to do it.  I have listed some things on Craigslist for about 2 weeks now, so I definitely know those things will be in the sale.  I will probably just have to make last minute decisions and go with the flow!  How FUN this could be!

I am up to this and hope we can sell it all!  I have it posted on Craigslist that we are having the sale on Friday, September 3rd and Saturday, September 4th!  Today is the beginning of Wednesday, September 1st and I have 2 days to go through everything and be ready, I CAN do this!  We are selling mostly everything except for our living and dining room furniture, some kitchen things and our grandsons toys and tables.  I have given several things to our son and daughter-in-law and to my parents that they can use and have a few things picked out for my niece who has just announced she will be getting married. 

We have a sectioned off our basement into different areas: Toss, Donate, Yard Sale, Gifts, and Keep.  This should be easy then, go through the stuff and decide on an area it is going to go to.  Then do it, toss it, donate it, have the yard sale (after that then donate the rest), or gift it to somebody you love and keep the least amount possible! 

I have decided that all our Christmas Gifts this year are coming from right inside this apartment, and some of it is brand new stuff that has just been sitting in boxes for years!  I will make one small exception and will purchase a couple of things for our grandsons.  It is sad to know that I spent that money way back when and could of used it in some other way but then I look at it now as I already have Christmas bought and paid for...YAY for me!  All I have to do it wrap it!  Oh OK, I don't wrap gifts, my family will tell you, I bag them and then I ask for the bags back, unless it is a special bag and they want to keep it, and then reuse them the next year!  I will not have to go out into the stores and fight the crowds and stand in line to pay for anything.  All I have to do is decide what goes to whom and wrap it...oh I mean...bag it!  Exciting time ahead my friends! 

The  100 Thing Challenge is still in the back of my mind and I am so excited to get there, to downsize to those 100 personal items.  Then my husband and I will sit down and decide what number of household items we will keep.  Below, is how Tammy Strobel and her husband decided on what should stay and what should go!

This is from Tammy Strobel's blog on Loving Life, Not Stuff from RowdyKittens: 

Going through my stuff again helped me reevaluate what I need in my life. As a result, I was able to donate a number of items that were cluttering up my closet and bookshelf. I also reconsidered why I’m participating in the 100 Thing Challenge and its importance.

The more I mull it over, the more I think the 100 Thing Challenge is less about counting up stuff, than it is about asking ourselves larger questions like:
Being aware of how stuff affects our physical and emotional health is empowering. More importantly, making small changes in our own lives leads to a greater awareness of the connection between environmental, economic, and social justice issues. With that in mind, here are a few tips to help you unplug from your stuff.

1. Slowly sort through your stuff.

Go through your home room by room and create piles of stuff you want to keep and stuff you want to donate. This process takes time. Undertaking a gradual transition will help alleviate emotional guilt associated with trashing possessions and promotes a routine of minimizing that is more likely to outlast quick lifestyle fixes.
I get a lot of emails that ask for a magic solution to the problem of clutter. There is no magic solution. If you have a house full of stuff, there is no weekend solution for responsible decluttering.
And I’m serious, be responsible. Don’t throw your stuff away! Give it away or repurpose items so you don’t need to buy something new. We don’t need more stuff in the landfills, toxins seeping into our water supply or more garbage shipped to developing countries.

2. Avoid lifestyle creep.

Lifestyle creep is when we try to keep up with the mythical Joneses and end up unhappy and in debt. Participating in the 100 Thing Challenge is a great way to avoid this phenomenon. For instance, I take care of what I have instead of constantly buying the latest clothes or shoes. It’s helped me become more mindful of my consumption choices.

3. Save rather than shop.

If you take on the 100 Thing Challenge, I guarantee you’ll save a lot of cash. One of the main reasons I’m participating in this challenge is to keep clutter out of my life and to save money. I’m now much more thoughtful about my purchases. I know what I already have and what I may or may not “need.” The end result has been an increase in savings and time. And that makes me happy.

4. Get your counting groove on.

Consider participating in this challenge. If you think the task is too difficult and you are not sure where to start, then begin by reading The Story of Stuff, The Art of Being Minimalist, Simplify, and The Simple Guide to a Minimalist Life. These books will help you unplug from your stuff and consider its hidden costs.


So my friends, let's each take a look at what we have and ask ourselves:  Do we need it?  Is it just taking up space?  Have I used, wore, or done anything with it in the last 3 months?  Is it going to make me happier if I keep it?  Who could use it and be happier having it?  Then give it to them!  Don't give your stuff to people who don't need more stuff...get them on the band wagon of downsizing and purging their clutter!  Give it to people who need it.

Show your family and friends what is most important, being happy with less clutter, less stuff, and blessing someone else with it!  Plus, I just know, my mind will be calmer with less things to look at!  Enough for today, I have given you a lot to think about, digest and read!  Enjoy life my friends with less stuff!

Time to go through boxes of stuff, if I don't come out in a few days send in the rescue team to find me!

Loving life and not stuff,

Lisa

No comments: