We have a very narrow entryway. When all five of us arrive at home at the same time it is claustrophobic. I decided that the first spot to get serious about clearing the clutter would be our entryway and coat closet. I am decluttering the entryway as my first project.
To the horror of some, this is not the first time I’m cleaning out this closet! A few months ago I went through and changed our outerwear for the seasons. As you can tell in the photo, however, I left the outdoor gear and the out of season shoes stuffed in the nooks and crannies.
How to edit?
I pulled everything out of the closet and swept the inside. I made three piles – Keep, Donate, and Toss:
Some things were easy to designate in the Donate or Trash pile – broken and incomplete board games, mismatched shoes, and shoes and coats my youngest has outgrown.
There is a large age gap between my middle and youngest child. A lot of things that I am holding onto are for my youngest – books, clothes, shoes, toys. This creates a lot of clutter, especially when one doesn’t intentionally and regularly sort through them. *Ahem* – finger-pointing at myself.
As I was sorting out the items, I found myself rationalizing why I should put things in the Keep pile.
“Oh, I forgot about those shoes! Those will be cute for the Spring”
“I’ll hold onto these for when my youngest will fit into them. I don’t want to have to buy those again in a few years”
“I played this game when I was a child.”
I was thinking about my rationalizations after the first quick sorting session and trying to understand where they come from. Three strong realizations came through for me.
I am holding onto things out of:
- a desire to save money in the future.
- a hope for how time will be spent versus how time is actually spent.
- a vision of what I or any member of the family could wear versus what we actually wear.
I’m writing these down to clarify for myself why I don’t want to let some of these items go. I expect that these will be the same as I declutter other areas of the home.
What are some of the rationalizations that go through your head as you declutter?