Unclutter My Life. Day Five. The Hall aka the dumping ground.

It seems that these posts have been inspiring readers to tackle the clutter in their lives too. My Unclutter book is now out on loan to a friend.

The Reception Station Before

I managed to clear/create the reception station. As I don’t have the book I have no idea what day or time of day I was suppoed to do this. Monday I think.  It is Wednesday. And I started this 9 days ago. What I do know that this seems to be a daily task as everyone empties their lives into the hall on a daily basis.

The Reception Station After It is also the place we put things that are on the way out of the house, such as books to return to the library, things we need to remember to take to work, or donations to take to charity shops. I am going to have to come up with a better solution to keeping this area clutter free.

I also tackled the emotional task of letting go of paperwork I found when going through yet another shoe box that my mother had kept in her wardrobe. I put my wedding planning folder from 31 years ago in the recycling bin.

The table plan was fun as there were divorcees there with new partners and the aunts and uncles from one side of the family were not talking to each other.

Table Plan

And many people on this plan are no longer with us. Holding on to stuff that have happy memories can trigger sad thoughts too.

Wedding Picture

Seems crazy that Mom kept them for so long.

Wedding disco

Gathering dust.

Menu

Yet when I came across them the other day, I could not part with them immediately.

Stone Manor Hotel for your Special Day

I scanned them.

Wedding Stone Manor Bill

And finally in a mass sort out of paperwork I said goodbye to them.

Comparing the costs

It was tough. Why so we hold such attachment to such things?

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I guess that is why sometimes we need a friend to help us let go of stuff. Someone to hold them for us to stop us forming an attachment to them. To help us decide that we do not need a table plan and the receipt for the wedding cake from 31 years ago

Wedding cake

After all I still have my husband, most of the dinner set, some of the cutlery and the towels. Not bad for 31 years.

Unclutter My Life. Day Two. Too many cookbooks.

I have jumped to Chapter 4, Wednesday Evening, of Unclutter Your Life in One Week. I am sorting my cookbooks into three piles. Yes my life is that interesting. This is how they were stored previous to this sorting process.

The task got started on Sunday afternoon. I think that the fact that I started a Monday morning task on Thursday afternoon (sorting my wardrobe) and a Wednesday evening task on Sunday afternoon gives you some idea of how I approach most things in life. Not a linear person at all. What I am doing however is tackling the jobs I can deal with. It seems to me it is pretty unreasonable to do all the jobs she suggests in 7 days. Others seem to agree, going on some of the reviews on Good Reads. I too am flicking through and cherry picking the tasks that work for me. Letting go of stuff is never easy so why force myself into a place that makes me uncomfortable? The task was to sort them into books I use once a week, once a month and those I rarely or never open. These made it to the less than a monthly/rarely pile. Some have one or two recipes I use occasionally. I checked and they are all available on line. All of these are being offered for sale.

Which books have I kept? My cookbooks nowDelia taught me to cook. Both are over 30 years old. I think they have stood the test of time. The student book is one I use all the time. The Hairy Bikers is relatively new so I have not tested which category it belongs to yet (that said all the recipes are on line) and this is the most used Jamie Oliver cook book. As most of his recipes seem to be availble on line even this may go. The juicing book came with the juicer and I live in hope of becoming a dedicated juice type of person. We shall see. How many cook books do you have and could you get rid of them like this?

Unclutter My Life, Day One. Going into the Closet.

In an attempt to restore order in my life, and to clear this house of all the stuff we have accumulated over 30 odd years, I am reading this book. Unlutter in 7 days

I know it will take me longer than 7 days. I have a six bedroom house. And the amount of stuff that is in it is overwhelming. I really did not know where to start.

This book is helping me to tackle the clutter, as it deals with one area at a time. I tend to start one job then get distracted. Yet the tranformation from being a person who talked and blogged about needing to do this, to one that was doing it, came as a result of attending a life coaching workshop at Nettlefest, led by Lisa Cherry Beaumont.

During the session I identfied that the area of my life I most wanted to make a change in was the clutter in my home.There are lots of other things about and in my life that I want and need to change and I listed all of them during the session.  I could only choose one and I chose this particular topic because, as it impacted on so many other areas of my life, it would potentially make positive changes there too.

It really helped that part of the process was writing an outcome statement and putting a date on it. As was visualising the impact that achieving the goal would have on my life.

I am constantly reading articles about decluttering, and after reading 20 Things In Your Home you Need To Get Rid Of Now I recycled 100’s of magazines that have been gathering dust. Some date back to 2009. I am not sure a dentist surgery will take magazines that old.

Old magazines

I have had this book for sometime, yet I am now more focussed on the goal as a result of the life coaching. The book is a tool to help me achieve that goal. After reading Chapter 1, Foundations, and Chapter 2, Monday Morning, Your Wardrobe, on a sunny Thursday afternoon in the garden, I was inspired to get going on some closet clearing.

My colour coordinated wardrobe

In 30 minutes I achieved this.

Coathangers

These are all the spare coathangers I have after weeding these out of the wardrobe. Out with the old

These clothes have now been donated to charity.

The book is, I think, somewhat unrealistic. Chapter 1, Monday, implies that the closet could be sorted before you set off for work. The second section of Monday covers organising your desk and office at work.  Monday evening, no flopping on the sofa with a chilled white wine, there is the Reception Station to be sorted.

Yeah right, that’s going to happen. Not.

Perhaps starting on a Thursday held me back.

Yet I have made a start. I have a Goal. I have identified the Reality. Explored my Options. Identified my Way forward. I am going to GROW.