Monday, April 25, 2011

Whatcha gonna do with all that stuff?

This year has felt like WHOOOOSH! Moving at warp speed!

When I had THAT birthday in February, I had to take some time to re-evaluate myself and my life. One should do that at least once every decade, don't you think? Now, I'm not the best person when it comes to change. Especially if I have to step outside my comfort zone. I can get cranky and, sometimes, downright unpleasant when things don't go the way I think they should go. So, seeking change for the sake of change isn't really my strong suit. But, seeking change I am!

I've decided it's time to "SIMPLIFY" my life. I have a LOT of stuff. Physical stuff. Stuff I bought. Stuff people gave me. Stuff I inherited. Too much stuff as a matter of fact. Things I've kept for entirely too long for reasons I no longer remember. And, not just at home, either! I've got too much stuff at work. My office? Well, it's been embarassing ... I've never stayed on a job as long as I've been on this one, so I never had the opportunity to accummulate too much stuff on a job ... until now. I'm six years on this job and my office has been the amassing of books and maps, posters and papers, and, of course, Happy Meal toys, and ... well, let's just say I've got lots and lots of stuff in my office, too. And, it all came here, one item at a time. It crept up on me. I do believe it's time for some of the stuff in my office to leave, too.

I googled "too much stuff" and it returned 894,000 items with the words "too much stuff" in the title or body of the article. There's even a web site called On NPR's "Fresh Air" is a piece done last year that asks when does 'collecting' cross the line into 'hoarding?'  It's a tenuous line, too. And, I'm afraid I may have crossed it. BUT! I didn't stay there. I realized I didn't want to be there and that lead me to adopt a new mantra for this decade: SIMPLIFY.

When I leave this life, I don't want to leave a whole lot of stuff for my kids to deal with. Photo albums? Yes. A favorite bracelet or coveted handbag? Yes. Photographs of my parents and grandparents? Yes. Maybe a few books. And, certainly a few Barbie dolls. But, the rest of it needs to find a new home.

So, I begin the simplification process.  If you'd like, you can visit my My Ebay Seller's Page for this week and see what I'm eliminating from my "stuff." I'm auctioning off a doll I bought for my now 24-year-old daughter, along with the fashions and accessories that made playing with a doll so much fun. It was a "new" idea at the time ... in 1992-1993 ... a doll that promoted reading. The dolls did go on to enjoy great success, and eventually Pleasant Company sold out to Mattel and as things always do, they changed. My daughter grew up, turned 11-years-old and lost all interest in dolls. The doll and her goodies went into a plastic bin and into a closet, where she remained until my daughter went to college. I took the bin out, sorted through the items and said to anyone who would listen, "I'll put these things up on ebay." I put the top back on the bin, moved it to a different closet and didn't think about it again until last week when I started cleaning out the closet.

Some people's blogs include a picture a day, a recipe a day, a quote a day ... you get the idea. I'm going to chronicle getting rid of my stuff until next spring. I don't know that it will be every day, but it will be frequent and, sometimes, painful. It's a challenge to myself to not just talk about it or write about it, but to actually DO IT! You're welcome to come along for the ride. Or, not. Suit yourself. You could always go clean out your own closet. I think we all probably have too much stuff.

This time next year, I am promising myself that I won't have as much stuff. That's my mantra: "SIMPLIFY." We'll see if I can keep the promise ...

No comments: