The first thing you should do before you downsize is to de-clutter. If you’re living in a house, this means taking the time to go through each room in the house and declutter it.
This will provide you with a much more succinct look at what you actually own and what is merely disposable junk that you’ve kept around for years for one reason or another.
Decluttering Teaches You The Value of Things
You might not realize this until you start doing it, but you actually have a lot of meaningless things in your life that when you take a hard look at the stuff you have, it doesn’t actually bring you any joy, or serve any function whatsoever, or have any deep personal meaning to you. It’s simply ‘stuff’ that you can do without.
Learn to Simplify Your Life
One of the best things about decluttering is that it allows you to simplify your life and make some realizations. You can only take up so much space at any one time, and your space that you’re going to might not be as big as the one you currently have, so take the time to ask yourself whether or not you’re actually going to have space for each item in your new place and if you don’t have room for it, either donate it, sell it, or chuck it. Maybe you don’t need three chairs in the living room alongside your large loveseat, maybe you don’t need all of the cutlery or utensils that you’ve accumulated over the years. While these items are not necessarily ‘clutter’, they certainly ‘clutter’ space. Get rid of them!
This is important. We all have that closet that we dare not open, that bathroom drawer that has been shut for months and won’t open because it’s packed full of miscellaneous things… Well, now is the time to open those babies up and get to work. Take a leap of faith and dive in. Again, prioritize and consider your new space all the time. If it won’t serve you well in your new home, don’t bring it with you. Decluttering even the most cluttered of spaces will leave with a deep sense of satisfaction, open up those drawers or that closet and declutter that space.
Clothes, Lots Of Clothes
Everyone accumulates clothing over their lifetime. That’s just the way we are. Most people have full walk-in closets dedicated to their clothing, some have multiple shoe racks, many have an entire closet just for their coats. Mind-boggling, but true! One of the best things you can do for yourself is to downsize your wardrobe. This doesn’t have to be complicated to be rewarding. Ask yourself the following questions: 1) Does it fit me anymore? 2) Does it bring me joy to wear it? 3) Am I going to wear it often enough to justify keeping it? 4) Can I put it somewhere else and take it out when I need it? 5) Could someone else use it? That last one is really important and good for your soul. What you do with the clothes that you don’t decide to keep is your business, but donating it to a homeless shelter, or a second-hand store is good karma if nothing else.
You Can’t Take It All With You
Perhaps you have lived in your space for several years, or perhaps space has been your home-for-life with your family and now you’ve decided to downsize due to the cost of upkeep. Regardless of your circumstances, one of the realizations that decluttering will permit you to have, is that you can’t take it all with you. It’s a cold and stark realization, but a necessary one. I’m sorry, but it’s just true that you’re going to have to make some difficult decisions and sacrifices. Decluttering your space will make these difficult decisions easier.
Nobody makes it out of this world alive, and we can’t take anything with us to the grave. With that rather dark, but also profound realization in mind, go forth and declutter your space to allow you to downsize your life and simplify it.