Some Casualties Are Okay.

some casualties are okay

Have you ever seen a baby, with his hands full of sippy cups and stuffed animals, try to pick up something else without letting anything go? I get to watch this scene unfold several times a day with my 12-month-old. It is adorable to see in a sweet and clumsy new toddler, but not so cute in a 30-something-year-old. This instinct stays with us and shows up all over the place in our adult lives. We all need reminders to make room for abundance in our lives.

When I am organizing with my clients, all of whom have different organizing problems and different lives, I find myself sharing the same truth. It is one of the universal truths that apply to all of us, because we all had, have, or will have clutter. Mental and physical clutter. The truth is: when we are getting rid of clutter, there will be casualties. It will happen. You will get rid of something that you will want later.

The eventuality of missing something may sound like a good reason to keep it all and hold on to everything. Despite the likely chance that you will not remember 99.9% of what you give away, the idea that you might miss the 0.01% makes you want to hold on and never let go. It is your human instinct, but it can come with devastating consequences.

The devastating consequences of holding on to clutter aren’t just a hoarded home that hurts those who live there and anyone close to them. It is lost time and energy that could have been put towards doing something meaningful, something you love that makes your world a little brighter. Clutter is a weight that has built on top of you so gradually, you don’t even realize anymore that it is holding you down. It is harmed relationships, depression, and anxiety. It is giving power to our stuff, sometimes our really nice stuff, to control our lives.

Clutter is a weight

When you are getting rid of junk and clutter, there will be casualties and a few regrets. You may lose the battle sometimes, but you can still win the war. Just keep fighting. The freedom on the other side is worth it. Talk to anyone who is a reformed pack-rat/hoarder. They never want to go back. Sometimes it takes getting to the other side to truly understand what you’ve been missing.

Remember to make room for abundance. Don’t overbook your schedule. Don’t overfill your home. Set boundaries on relationships. Let go of grudges. Let go of that container of holiday decor you haven’t used in 2 years or that craft stuff that doesn’t even sound fun to make anymore. Make room to dream again. Give yourself room to change. Remember that casualties of clutter are okay and just part of the process.

Here is my sweet little cookie hoarder trying to figure out how to hold a cookie in both hands and still pick up his sippy cup!

Pickup my sippy

I have lots of thoughts on clutter. Read some: 91 Day De-Clutter Challenge, Mini De-Clutter Challenge, Let Go Of Unused Holiday Stuff, Your JUNK or Your Life, Secrets of the Organized, and When In Doubt Get Rid Of It. That should keep you occupied for a while.

Check back Friday for the start of the Dreaming-of-Spring Cleaning Challenge!!


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13 thoughts on “Some Casualties Are Okay.

  1. Hi Mary – a friend linked to your 91 day de-clutter challenge, and I immediately went and signed up. I’ve been on a journey for just over a year now to try and fix my clutter/housekeeping issues. As a busy mama of 3, it gets so hard, and I’m so guilty of just HANGING ON TO EVERYTHING! I’ve been saying for a long time now, our stuff is hurting us, not helping us. I just had to tell you that something about this post resonated so deeply within me, that I’m going to print out the quote and put it at the top of this week’s challenge. Thank you so much!

  2. Thank you Mary… yet another encouragement that I needed to read. That has always been one of my reasons for keeping lots of stuff… as soon as I get rid of something then I will need it and typically that does happen but now my mindset is changing so it doesn’t matter. Being decluttered and being able to find things easily has become more important to me. Again thank you :)

  3. I can hold onto something for years and then finally just get rid of it. The very next day, need it!! Gahhh! This has happened a lot!

    1. I think you’ve just proved the point that you might as well get rid of it when you first stop needing it. Then you’ll have more time without it causing clutter. :)

  4. A saying I came up with to remind myself to not acquire clutter is: A store is called a store for a reason. They can store it for me until I actually need it.

  5. Like mentioned above, if I have too much clutter I can’t find what I wanted anyway. Then I either end up buying a second one or doing without. Makes it pointless to keep it in the first place.

  6. I just started in the last few years to be an organizer for some clients. The more I organize their lives. The more I’m wanting to be a minamilast.We don’t need more than 1/2 the stuff we keep and hold on to.

Leave a comment! I love to hear what you think!