Saturday, March 10, 2007

Closet Clearing Methodology

Everyone knows the rules. If you haven't worn it in a year, out it goes. Same for anything damaged, holey, stained, just plain worn out. Easy, right? Well, if it is, why do so many of us have closets filled to bursting with clothing, most of which fits in one of the afore-mentioned categories?

Making decisions is exhausting. It takes a lot of mental energy to decide whether an item is worth keeping or should be donated or thrown away. The larger the closet, the bigger the pile of items to go through, the more energy it will take. This is why it is crucial to go through your closet and dreser at least once a year. If you make that a yearly habit (even better, four times a year with the change of seasons), you will find it easier each time. You'll actually remember that you had decided to keep that red t-shirt another few months, and that you never actually wore it. Easy decision now, out the door it goes.

Using drawer dividers can even further simplify this task. You can take care of one division of shirts, underwear, socks, etc. in about fifteen minutes (the magic time amount, according to the FlyLady). You'll enjoy a feeling of serenity as you let go of items that don't fit your lifestyle or size or changing sense of fashion.

I had hung onto several t-shirts that I remembered really liking, but hadn't worn for a while. Why didn't I wear them? Rises changed, becoming lower. Thus, a t-shirt that formerly fit nicely and allowed adequete coverage no longerlooks right with today's lower waisted jeans. So, easy decision once I realized it: out the door!


Clutter Buddy said...

Good Job!~ and good advice! here's my the purge twice a year when you change your clocks (like tonight) :) i've done a purge pretty recently but i've also been thinking about things daily, if it still fits and i still like it but it's not flattering, then it's been going! i've also been tossing as i grow out of things, because i know i won't be going back up to that size :) and lastly, on those days that i have to try on a couple things to find something i like? well, the ones who didn't make the cut that day are gone also.

Lora said...

Hmm. Thanks so MUCH for the REMINDER.

Aiighhh. More things I haven't done yet this year...add throwing out milk-stained t-shirts to the list...


Jay Bazuzi said...

I confirm that the decisions you have to make as you declutter are draining. At the end of a session, I always feel exhausted, but I also feel lighter, as the burden of my things has been reduces. It's a wonderful feeling, and quite addictive!

I've been on the path for a few years now, and I'm still amazed by how much JUNK I still have. I know I've come a long way (the empty spaces here and there are proof) but I still have a long way to go.

This past weekend I rewired my home theater, removing my VCR (good riddance!). All but one VHS tape is going away, too. (yay!). Each time I go behind some electronics to clean up the wiring, I always come back with a bunch of wires that were no longer connected because they weren't needed. The behind-the-TV space is much cleaner, neater, and toddler (x2) proof.

With a bunch of spare cables in hand, I went to the closet to put them away. That area had become a bit chaotic, so I decided to sort the cables. This is the 4th time I've been through my spare cable collection, and STILL I found half a dozen wires to get rid of!

So - purge early, and purge often. Each time it gets easier.