Finally, just this year I stumbled onto a method of getting rid of stuff I don’t need that works for me.

The house we are renting is large for us.  We have four bedrooms, a large bonus room and I even have my own office.  Space is not an issue, and it’s a fun change to have lots of extra space.  But extra space presents its own problems.  You can keep lots of things you don’t need and never have to see those things.  I’m tired of keeping stuff I don’t need.  But, I really liked some of my stuff, I knew decluttering could be hard for me.  So here’s what I did::

1. Decide on a holding area to house the questionable items {a box, your trunk, a room whatever}

I had to create a way for me to experience the benefit of decluttering before feeling the pain of getting rid of things.  So I moved anything in question into the garage.  And since I knew I was having a yard sale, I went ahead and priced stuff knowing that if I decided to keep it I could easily pull the tag off.

Physically removing stuff from our home –even just to the garage, helped me get a sense of the benefit of less.

Not everyone has a garage but most of us can create a dedicated space that can become a holding area.  Ideally, you want your holding area to be a magical, perfect balance.  It should still be noticeable enough that will annoy you if it’s a cluttered mess forever but, out of the way enough that your boys won’t trip over it when they go to the bathroom.

2. Create a deadline.

I had a date for a yard sale.  Deadline.  Maybe you are having company or hosting an event.  A deadline helped me not give up.

3. Purge

Put anything in question in the holding area.  If you are going to have a yard sale, price it. If you are taking it to the Goodwill, box it up.  You can always remove it later if you find you really do need it.

4. Enjoy your decluttered space for a few days.

This is the most important step for people like me.  I had to see that the beauty and ease of a less cluttered space was worth getting rid of whatever it was I had moved to the garage.  Wow, I already forgot what I took to the garage.  It is at this point that you are allowed to go back into the holding area and remove something if you really need it.  I can’t remember taking anything out of my holding area and even now, there is not ONE thing I regret selling at my yard sale.

Have you figured out a system of decluttering that works for you?

PS tomorrow: yard sale photos

Be sure to visit the other 31 dayers::Life With My 3 Boybarians, Reluctant Entertainer, The Inspired Room, Remodeling This Life, Chatting at the Sky, Balancing Beauty and Bedlam, My First Kitchen,  over the next 31 days. Want to read all the Less Messy Nests posts? Click here.