The Big Lies we all tell about our Clutter

Lie #1:  “I’m going to get this fixed.”
The best way to deal with this is to break this down.  Its a broken clock that is your grandmother’s?  Okay, here are the steps to get this done.
  1. Decide on a budget or getting the clock fixed.
  2. Google local clock repair shops and pick the top two or three. (1 hour)
  3. Call each one and make an appointment (30 minutes)
  4. Put the appointments in your calendar. (5 min)
  5. Put the clock in a box and put it in your car. (20 min)
  6. Go to each appointment.  (4 hours)
  7. Decide who will fix your clock. (10 minutes)
  8. Take your clock to them. (1 hour)
  9. Pick up the repaired clock (1 hour)
  10. Decide where your clock is going to live in your house (or in storage). (10 minutes)
You can see that this whole process can take about 10 hours of your life and hundreds of dollars.  Multiply this “reason” times all of the broken items you have that you “plan” to get fixed.  That probably adds up to a lot of hours and money.  Is it worth it?
Lie #2:  “I have to keep this.” 
Who is the ultimate authority of this item?  Who is the decision maker here?  The CDA? (Chief Decluttering Authority). Who is responsible for storing, cleaning, maintaining, insuring and taking care of this item? Is it you?  Okay then.  You don’t have to keep it, but you do have to give yourself permission to let it go.
Lie #3: “This is worth a lot of money.”
This may be true, but usually, people have no idea what their things are worth right NOW.  What they really are thinking is, “I paid a lot of money for that item when I bought it.” or “It was very valuable at one point.”  That’s true about a lot of things. Televisions used to be a major purchase and were very expensive, now you can buy a big one for $200.  Beautiful antique furniture, handpainted china, fine linens and collectibles like Hummel figurines were very expensive to purchase new and were passed down through generations. The truth is, and I have had this discussion with so many clients, things are only worth what someone will pay for them right now, today.   Try selling a piano and you will see what I mean.  Some things you can’t even give away or you have to pay someone to come haul it away. If you aren’t sure what something is worth it, have it appraised professionally, talk to a reseller or estate sale/auction person, or look online at what items have sold for.  On eBay you can search on Closed Auctions to see what the final price is.  It doesn’t matter as much what items are selling for, if no one is bidding then the price is too high.
If you don’t want or enjoy the item anymore, and it is worth a lot of money, you could sell it and buy something you really like instead. Or you could donate it and take a tax credit. But keeping something just because it was once valuable isn’t a very good excuse.
Lie #4: “I bought this because I was going to do…and someday I still will.” 
I was going to learn to knit so someone gave me a beginners knitting kit, with yarn, knitting needles, books, etc. I stuck it in a drawer for years. I moved 3 times, I packed it, moved it, and unpacked it every time.  Every time I would come across it I would say to myself, Oh Yes, someday I’m going to learn to knit.  Finally, during my 4th move, I came across that stuff and was suddenly struck by how silly I was to carry that around for the past 10 years!  I am not going to ever learn to knit and if I really want to I can buy a new kit, or ask for it as a birthday present or something.  For 10 years, I selfishly held onto something that many of my friends or clients would have been glad to have because they really DO knit and would have made something lovely out of that beautiful yarn. So I finally gave it away and felt silly for waiting so long. Many people do this, and I can tell you it feels much better to pass on things I’m not using to people who will use and appreciate it.  Plus I don’t want to keep things that don’t bring me joy right now, that stuff was just bringing me stress as something I was procrastinating about. 

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