Dirt Underneath Decluttering

Photo by Yuyeung Lau on Unsplash

I am not sure why, but I have been in a decluttering kick for the last few months. I have looked through our drawers, closets, and cabinets, finding things that we haven’t used and feeling strong enough to discard through donation or sales. Decluttering has been one of my favorite hobbies and I try to convince others into trying it (come and join the party!) It may seem scary, but it is so liberating and and revealing. I might have gotten too used to it though.

I was considering buying an item, and in the process I thought “If it doesn’t work, I will declutter it.” I realized my train of thought and stopped right there. First, I didn’t get the item. I hadn’t bought it and was ready to trash it! Second, I understood that the ability to declutter had turned into a crutch for bad shopping habits. Who would’ve thought that a good behavior (because I still think is great) could have been used inappropriately.

The more I get rid of, the easier it is to get rid of more. I might want to give the item another try or keep it for a bad day. When I get to it in the second round, there is a higher probability that I have accepted that I don’t need or want it, and am ready to let it go. Even though my shopping has curved, I have new things coming in every month. At the same time, I want to curate my items and have what looks best on me, which entails an ongoing process. So to keep my perfecting goal I sacrificed my liberating goal, which by the way, has more priority.

I have to confess that I did not want to stop my bad habit and put a garbage bag as a band-aid. I’ve discussed it before, and even though I continually get better, being at home all day because of a pandemic does not help to not browse around for something interesting. I could’ve kept acting in this mindless manner but I will see my constant self-prodding as the cause for a victory. Decluttering has shown me what is truly important to me and has allowed me to pursue it. Picking something up and immediately tagging it as a candidate for removal helped me identify how not important it was to me. In turn, it allowed me to keep curating my closet by not adding burdens to it.

I want my priorities to be in the right place and I want to reap benefits from my work and growth. Now when I go shopping, I am even more intent in understanding if there is a possibility of it soon being removed from my closet. I don’t want to use the instrument of decluttering to cover for bad decisions but to help me move on once things have no place in my life. My aim is to continue reducing bad decisions but I am definitely going to continue giving myself grace, for the purpose is to keep getting better and not to punish a wrong choice.

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