The Legacy of Clutter

Dear Friends,

We don’t have to leave a legacy of clutter for our family. We can take a new approach to releasing this stuff from our lives. Let’s use our creative minds to help us. Join us in our Declutter Games.

Summer is a time when many people move from one area of the country to another. Every day we get an email that begs for help because this FlyBaby is moving. Moving is tough but living with our clutter is not
living at all. We don’t have to move to get rid of our clutter and show our homes. I am going to write a new essay on Let’s Pretend to Move!

Now put on your imagination and play with me for a while.

So you are moving!!! Don’t let it scare you to death. It is just like any other project that we undertake and we won’t need an undertaker when we are finished either.

I have one rule to follow!

If you don’t love it; leave it.

You can’t afford to move it, especially if you are paying by the pound. This is exactly how you have to think about things with a big cross country move.

I am going to be pretty tough here. All that really matters is that you have your family with you. Every thing else you have in your home is just STUFF and can be replaced if need be. The thought of starting over is too much to consider sometimes, but right now in the world many people are doing just that with the clothes on their back: Fire, flood, divorce, death, or financial problems. You name it, this happens all the time. You have even done it. I have done it three times in my life. Guess what! It didn’t kill me either! I had a choice, many people are not that blessed.

It is much easier to declutter when you are not forced into it by extenuating circumstances. This is why I have tried to teach you to do it in babysteps, so you don’t even realize it is happening. Who on earth misses a grocery bag of clutter, when it leaves your home one bag a day! Imagine 365 of those bags tied up and piled in your living room floor. That is a lot of stuff. Now think about every time you come home from the store with more bags of stuff. No wonder we don’t have a place for every thing. The old stuff is taking over your home and the new stuff has no home. STUFF is everywhere!

When we have nothing, we want more stuff. We think that stuff will make us feel better. All stuff really does is give us a false sense of security. So we go out and spend more money to buy the stuff to fill up the hole that eats away at our soul. The more stuff we have the safer we feel. We fill our homes with more gadgets to make our life easier, when in the long run they take up space and don’t really work that well. After a while of filling that hole with stuff; it begins to weigh you down. It keeps you from enjoying your home and your family. It keeps you from being light on your feet and before you know it, you are sinking into the pits of despair. The stuff you had really wanted is causing your health, family and home to pay the toll. Then we rent storage units to put all of the stuff that is over flowing from our homes. That costs us more money that we have to steal from our family: just to hold our stuff.

Just think back to a time when you were starting over. It has taken years to accumulate all the things that you have. I want you to look very closely at this stuff. How has it come into your lives? I’ll bet that most of it has been given to you. Hand-me-downs, inherited from your parents. Then the rest has come from garage sales. How many of the items in your home have a special meaning? Do they tell a story that brings a smile to your face or does it make you feel bad when you look at it.

Our “poor me” attitude has caused us to be surrounded by so much STUFF! Do you know what the term STUFF stands for: Something That Undermines Family Fun! Think about the money that it takes to take care of your STUFF: store it, clean it, organize it, and move it. STUFF is clutter to me and clutter cannot be organized. Do you hear me! All you can do is get rid of it; One little bag at a time or one dumpster at a time. I don’t care how you do it; it just has to be done to make room for you and your family and the love that you have for one another.

All any of us need in our lives are food, clothing, shelter and love! The comforts of home! Not a storage place for STUFF. Over the last several years, we have slowly decluttered our home. It is an on-going process! I mean this. When we bring home a new item, an old one has to go. Now we only have items in our home that bring a smile to our face. Most of our belongings we have accumulated in the last six years; One item at a time. During the first of our marriage, I was still in my “ole poor me” mode and we would buy pallet lots of stuff at estate auctions and come home and try to make a place for it all. It has taken me the better part of 4 years to slowly get rid of other people’s stuff from our home. Now we only have those special items that make us smile. Since I have quit buying just anything to fill a hole, I have found that I have more time and money for the necessitates of life; That is love!

Now back to the reason for this essay! Let’s pretend we are moving. This means taking a long hard look at our stuff and deciding if we truly love it, use it regularly, or just think we need it. Now don’t get all upset. Heirlooms are special, but if you keep them just “because” and you don’t really love them, then they are taking the place of something that could really bring a smile to your face. I have heard of a sad story of a wealthy family that upon the death of the grandmother and during the funeral, one of the daughters had
the horse hair sofas(all six of them) removed from the estate. They were supposed to be very special. As a result those sofas could never be gotten rid of by the only child of this greedy person. Those sofas were just clutter that could not be used and ended up in one room filled with more stuff. Upon his death, the stuff was all auctioned off. How sad to be saddled with someone else’s prizes and never really have anything of your own.

I want for you what I have; Peace and this peace came from letting go of bad memories and everything that did not bring a smile to my face. Let go and live a life that is filled with love!

Are you ready to FLY?

FlyLady

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