Here is the After of our entryway. After decluttering the entryway, there is so much more space. The empty space between the front door and the closet door is a new and improved result of decluttering. I forgot to take a photo of that area before. The shoe rack inside the closet used to be in between the 2 doors, making it difficult to open either door.
I’m training my boys to put their shoes inside the closet on the rack and to hang up their coats as soon as they walk through the door. I’m hopeful that someday I can stop reminding them and they’ll do it out of habit!
Speaking to our Rationalizations
I still have items in the closet that I will probably donate. That Word Yahtzee game? I’ve had that since childhood and have fond memories of playing with my sisters growing up. Same with the backgammon game. My sisters and I played a lot of board games and cards growing up and I loved it. Those two games haven’t been touched by my kids. My children’s first choice during free time is not a board game. They prefer to play video games or imaginative play with Legos.
I am holding onto the games out of the hope that as a family we will play games together. I realized that that is okay as long as I implement times where I play the games with them. I will gladly store them in our space if they are used and loved by the family. I will get rid of them in 6 months if they are never played, in the hope that another family can enjoy and build memories with them.
I went through the Keep pile a second time and asked myself these questions:
Do I love it? Did I wear it last Spring or Summer? Is it comfortable?
Most of the shoes that I’m tempted to keep were given to me or I’ve stopped wearing because they aren’t comfortable, but I still like the look of them. I need to be realistic and recognize that I should not hold onto them for those reasons. When the weather warms up, I will be wearing flip flops, my croc sandals, or athletic shoes. I don’t need to hold onto several sandals thinking I’ll mix and match with my wardrobe. I’m a creature of habit.
Does it fit my children now?
I have to tell myself – I do not need to hold onto several pairs of rain and snow boots for my youngest. They probably won’t be the right size during the right season. I will be given or can purchase a pair at the right time and right season.
Decluttering from a place of “enough”
After I graduated college, I chose to serve a year in an urban ministry. I raised funds and worked in an inner city school. My teammates and I ate food from the food bank, shopped in thrift stores, found free events to do in our free time. We were happy. When I stayed at the ministry the following year – they paid me $14,000/year and provided housing. I felt rich. Indeed I was and am rich.
Being married and having three children, however, can quickly make you feel the financial pinch. However, after several years of having to pinch pennies, we are now at a place where we are earning enough and don’t need to worry about money. Yet I find that I am coming from a place of deprivation rather than plenty. I am grateful that we have enough. I need to continue to remind myself that I have more than enough. I can pass on those things which I am not currently using and loving. I can give those shoes, games, coats, and bags away. I do not need them. I need to declutter from a place of “enough”.
How are you speaking to your rationalizations?