The rightsizing process commonly triggers strong emotions, due to the sentimentality of items and lifetime mementos.
Here are the top 10 downsizing things you can do to ease the process:
- Start with easy stuff. Get rid of anything that’s broken, damaged, or no longer wanted. Next, go to the out of the way spaces like attics, crawlspaces, and garages. Making progress in easier areas will build a momentum to go through the harder to decide areas.
- Ask yourself, “if this disappeared tomorrow, would I run out and replace it?” If you said no, then it’s probably not worth keeping.
- Don’t be a storage unit for others. Be tough and set a timeline for their action or response to your request for removal of their items. It’s time to ask them to pick them up – or arrange to have them shipped. You may need to donate the items if your requests go unanswered.
- Ask For Help. Two hands and heads are better than one for this task. Although you can do much of this work on your own, a family member, a good friend, or even a professional organizer can help make the job more manageable.
- Decide what’s really important. Look at it this way; pretend you are moving overseas, and the number of items you can take will be severely limited and it will cost a small fortune to ship things. What items belong on your list? These are the things that matter most to you!
- Is this something from a lifestyle I no longer have or want? Cooking
items are the first that come to mind. For example, if you have three
cabinets full of plastic containers, but only cook for one or two
people, you probably can lose a few plastic sets – and dishes, pots and
- Mark your calendar! Schedule a regular time each week – or several days per week – to work on rightsizing. Realize
that rightsizing is a life-changing marathon, not a sprint. You didn’t
accumulate everything overnight, and you won’t sort it all out overnight
- Value what you keep. Remember this is not the
easiest to do. The fewer things you keep, the more you will treasure and
enjoy what you have, instead of tucking them away in a closet or
stacked among dozens of other things. These are the few, meaningful
items worth having in your personal space.
- Prevent new collections from forming. Instead of
material gifts, ask people to make a donation in your name or spoil you
by sharing time, enjoying new experiences, and indulging in luxuries
(spa certificates, imported chocolate, a musical or other theatre
productions. gift certificates for dinner out, etc.) – the things you
love and want, but don’t always buy for yourself.
- Use age to your advantage. This is the best time
to do this. Now is a great time to “gift” items that you “eventually”
want family members to have. Take a photo (preferably a digital one) of
them holding holding the special item and create a digital scrapbook of
“next generation” memories. Making your special people happy and freeing
yourself of extra “stuff” that you have been charged with keeping for
Easy Ways to Save on Your Move
Moving can be expensive. From packing supplies and movers to rental vans and gas, the costs can add up quickly.
Want to save on your upcoming move? Here’s how:
- Get free boxes from local grocery and convenience stores.
- Use recycled mailers, flyers and newspapers as packing materials.
- De-clutter and donate first to cut down on your load.
- Call in friends, family and coworkers for help with manual labor.
Make sure to save receipts for your moving expenses, too. Many moving costs can be deducted from your annual tax returns. Consult a certified accountant if you’re not sure how to proceed with this.