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Discussion Starter #1
I’m in the process of getting rid of my five bookcases of books. We are at round 2. Round one was basically me putting 50% of the books I pull back on the shelf. Once you open the book, it is much harder to get rid of it. Getting rid of a book is like getting rid of a piece of yourself.

Material things like old furniture, sporting goods, and random stuff are much easier to sell or donate. It would be nice to live a clutter free simple life. It is liberating to part with material good that no longer serve any purpose. It feels great to purge the dead weight. Does anyone have experience with this?
 

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Yes, sure do ;) I am the biggest fan of the minimalism movement (and the outstanding Netflix film, Minimalism) and have gotten rid of 95% of my possessions. I have all the necessities, a few sentimental items, and my pets and all their loot (but I'm trying to be minimalist with them as well!). After you lose a parent or someone close to you, you realize that things don't have any value. When I lived in a hotel for a month while my house was under construction, it was so liberating not to have things around me (just my girls, it was before Frosty :) ).

Here are some of the things I don't own:

-books/magazines
-DVDs
-CDs
-knickknacks
-any kind of decorations
-gifts (I will enjoy and then pass along)
-frivolous toiletries
-frivolous makeup
-expensive jewelry
-plates/bowls/cups/utensils (I buy biodegradable eating ware)
-rugs
-TV (getting rid of it, never watch)
-sporting goods

Some things I do own:

-car
-computers (one laptop, one desktop; would love to get down to only one)
-cell phone
-basic, utilitarian furniture
-enough clothes for one week
-a few pairs of shoes
-3 dogs and their stuff*
-1 betta and her stuff
-one set towels/sheets
-minimal toiletries
-minimal makeup (rarely wear)
-minimal costume jewelry (rarely wear)
-minimal natural cleaning supplies
-I keep minimal food in the house, go
to grocery store regularly

Welcome to the minimalist lifestyle!
 

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Hmm. Over the years I have parted with a lot of things but really I like to hang onto what I have. They didn't come easy and to just toss them when they still have life..well I find the hard. I have donated many books as now if I want to re read I just download a copy and they are others that could use them. I still have too much furniture but when my kids move on their own..maybe they can start with it...pots n pans..well I was never big into them and have 1 large, 3 small pans and 2 or 3 frying pans plus my cast iron that I can't part with. I also have a copper pan never used that I always thought I'd hang up in the kitchen but never did. Yeah I see I have a lot more and I'll stop here. Not ready..They all seem to have some sentimental value. I few new pieces of furniture I'd donate if one needed it, but my old stuff I can't part with. yet.
 

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I was forced to adopt more of a minimalist lifestyle when I had to sell my house and relocate for my current job. My house was pretty small (around 1000 sq. ft.), but now I live in an apartment that is around 700 sq. ft (with a very large laundry room and bathroom, so not much space for anything). I even sold many of things I collected as a kid/teen/young adult to help pay for the cost of the move. It was hard to part with what I sold, but in the end, it felt like a relief because I didn't know where to put it. I still buy things every now and again, and if the opportunity comes up and I can own a house again and buy new collectables, I probably will.
 

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Kudos to snow and zooeysmom for downsizing. I agree that our society is very materialistic but little of what we collect really matters in the grand scheme of things. The idea of having too much "stuff" makes me feel claustrophobic. But I make an exception for books, haha. I now have a Kindle which will help me cut down on the number of bookshelves I'll need when I get my own place.
 

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Discussion Starter #6
Thank you guys! GOD bless Bezos with Kindle. I am only buying kindle books from now on!

For things that you have emotional ties to, I think purging in waves or phases is the way to go. By round two, you'd forget what you've gotten rid of in round one. A reason, many people hang on to things is the fear that they will be unhappy without "x" or somehow if you had "x", you'd be able to live out a dream. In reality, you'd be just fine without it and be proud of who you are. One thing I've learned is that I need to stop buying things for the future.

At heart, I am a city person, and this means I will probably never have enough space for all the things I want but that is ok. Why? Because I NEED a lot less.
 

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I'm into minimalism too - rather I'm working my way towards it. I'm good with some things and paring down in others.

I found reading The Life-Changing Magic of Tidying Up: The Japanese Art of Decluttering and Organizing by Marie Kondō very helpful. I took two critical messages from this book to guide me.

One is the idea that everything in my home should "spark joy" - and by spark joy I interpret that to mean that things make DH and I feel good, happy, content, confident etc. or the item has to serve a purpose - ideally both. This is a simple concept.

The second idea was one that I've never seen before in a decluttering book and I found extremely helpful. When you first got the item it was serving a purpose. Maybe it was a gift someone gave you and the purpose was for them to give you something and for you to receive as part of a social contract. It could have been something you purchased on sale and relished how great a bargain shopper you are - so the need would be in the hunting down of that item and acquiring it. You can give these things away if they don't spark joy or serve a purpose now. They already served their purpose so you can let them go.

As for books - I have a few very special ones. I participate in 5 book groups and I'm a reader............ I belong to my local library. They have digital books I can download in seconds as well as some movies. I borrow DVD's - they have everything from popular movies, art house movies, TV shows, documentaries. They have a lending library of tools and other great programs for the community. I don't need to store any of this in my house.

You can safely ditch the books that you don't need. They met your need when you purchased them - they filled that spot that when you felt you needed them. Even if you didn't read them - it's okay to let them go. If you need to read them at a later date you can borrow them from the library or buy them again.

And at the end of the day you have an incentive to get rid of them - you're making a long distance move from a comfortable house into an apartment.
 

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Discussion Starter #8 (Edited)
Yes! I’m very familiar with the Kondo method! I’m gland you’ve mentioned it Skylar!
Bug Bye stuff (insert terrible buy bye pun joke here)
Things I need to let go:
The time I wanted to be a
1. Expert baker. I have fondant tools, rolling pins, and kitchaid stand mix. I have dog cookie cutters of my specific dog breeds
2. Dressmaker: goodbye serger, cover machine, draping books, fashion books, over priced fabric. Good bye my 20 different sewing feets and rainbow spools of thread
3. Painter: i have painting supplies since I could walk. Goodbye French easel to all the paints.
5. Outdoor enthusiast: kayak, camping equipment, sailing equipment
6. Pilates enthusiast: who needs a giant reformer when a mat and a gym membership would do.
The list goes on. I’m getting rid of all the things i thought I could be or do. It doesn’t mean won’t do it in the future.



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Oh wow, I so need to be surrounded by people becoming more minimalist. At 72 I am dumbfounded at how much I have. For example.... Over 5,000 books, I kid you not. I gave away about 100 last week, a tiny dent....

Trying to sort through and donate other things...

Does anyone else have the problem that after giving something away they forget they did so, and then end up looking for it for hours? That has happened to me so often. I tried making a list of what I had given away but that was not helpful....
 

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I'm in an extended, off and on process of decluttering. I'm not exactly working toward minimalism, but I am trying to keep only things that are functional, useful, and if possible, pleasing to one or more senses. Once I decide I'm ready to let whatever-it-is go, it needs to go asap. It's almost always a relief.

Does anyone else have the problem that after giving something away they forget they did so, and then end up looking for it for hours? That has happened to me so often. I tried making a list of what I had given away but that was not helpful....

kontiki, In the last couple of years, I started taking pictures of the things I give away. That way, I have it but don't have to store it or clean it lol. Thank heaven for digital photography :)
 

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After my mother died, my dad looked at my mom's stuff and was completely overwhelmed. My sister packed her car full of mom's stuff, just to help dad, and brought it to her house. Well, now my sister is trying to move, so she shuffled a bunch of mom's old stuff to my house.

I have boxes and boxes of family photographs dating back to the invention of the camera. Photos of people in 1860, 1870, 1909. I don't want them, but they have historical value. I don't want to throw them in the garbage, but, I don't want them, either.

I have animal knickknacks that remind me of my mom. A glass paperweight with a tiny mechanical turtle in it that wiggles its feet when it moves. My mom gave the paperweight to my grandfather for Christmas in 1943. I have my mother's entire turtle collection. Turtle pins, turtle carvings... My sister dropped all this on me and now I am the family archivist. It's a job I never wanted and I have no idea how to deal with it. I did manage to say no to my parent's old china. I have my wedding china in a china cabinet. I never use it. Why would I want my parent's china plates, and my grandmother's china plates?

Apart from the turtles, the things I really treasure are my mother's pots and pans. I cook with her dutch oven all the time. I have a cast iron frying pan that is well over 100 years old and cooks like it's brand new. When I cook something my mother taught me to make, in the pan she taught me to cook it in, that makes me smile.

It's very hard to part with things that belonged to your parents. My mom died in 2007. My dad died in February. I'm really not ready to purge those things yet. And that's okay. There's a lot of grief that needs to be worked through first. And that too is okay.
 

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Click..yep is ok. I actually have a few of my moms pots & pans, in fact most my pots n pans have been hers, lol. About a year ago I purchased two new pans with the intent of replacing hers. Can't do it. I have a few of her knick knacks & stuff in a box in a closet, a few ofher cookbooks, and a ledger from 1951 showing when we got our vaccinations, who she donated to church when we got our first drivers license...I think there is even a copy or two. Its sits on my shelf, also has a few recipes. There are just some things that bring good memories, and for some of us thats what we have now.
 

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Discussion Starter #13
Click! This is such a beautifully written post. My grandpa died last week and I have things he has given me when I was a child. Mostly stuffed animals that I don’t know what to do with. It isn’t just toys from him but from many other relatives who aren’t here anymore. I have donated a lot of gifted stuffed animals and only kept the small ones that have a lot of sentimental value.
 

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I hate clutter in my house, want everything to have a place where it belongs. So, when I want to buy something new I first think "where am I going to put it?" and then "how am I going to get rid of it?"

The problem with purging is what do you do with all the stuff? I hate just dumping it in a landfill, but most of it is pretty hard to "rehome".
 

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Discussion Starter #15
I hate clutter in my house, want everything to have a place where it belongs. So, when I want to buy something new I first think "where am I going to put it?" and then "how am I going to get rid of it?"



The problem with purging is what do you do with all the stuff? I hate just dumping it in a landfill, but most of it is pretty hard to "rehome".


Only if we all asked ourselves those questions. I have been selling things on nextdoor app. It less creepy than Craigslist. Lol

So far I’ve sold a few furniture pieces in storage, kayak, Apple TV, and giant faux tree plant. I’m not just going to donate things that will fetch a fair market price.


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I have been 'purging' for years now! After leaving a house to move into an Apt and having to divest myself of a lot of 'stuff' I still found myself without enough storage space! I too had hundreds of books and I whittled it down to two 7 ft tall book cases.....now I have whittled that down to just two shelves in each case, and have my sentimental family objects and small photographs in their place...........but I still have boxes of 'things' to get rid of, but I always hesitate because that "Just in case...." thought keeps popping up! LOL! After all I might still NEED that circular saw don't you think? Hahaha!!!!


P.S. VITA, I still have my Mom's big cast iron frying pan! It's over 60+ years old, well 'seasoned' and I still use it!
 

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I hate clutter in my house, want everything to have a place where it belongs. So, when I want to buy something new I first think "where am I going to put it?" and then "how am I going to get rid of it?"

The problem with purging is what do you do with all the stuff? I hate just dumping it in a landfill, but most of it is pretty hard to "rehome".
I've been doing this too.

And I think about my lifestyle - will I really use it?
 

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My family always tries to sell stuff at a rummage sale (or used clothing store) at least 2-3 times, and if that doesn't work, it goes to Goodwill or some other donation center.

My mom has a hard time letting go of anything. She actually did a really good job of donating and trying to sell a bunch of stuff (clothing, collectibles) before my grandmother died 5 years ago, but then everything that didn't sell at my grandmother's estate sale and no one else wanted ended up at my parents' house. I have things of hers that I will never get rid of, either, even if I never have a place for it. My great-great grandfather's dining room table set was given to me when I bought my grandmother's house. It was taken apart when I had to move and is being stored in my childhood bedroom until I can eventually find a place for it again. Those types of things I will never get rid of, even with minimal space.
 

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I don't like to deal with anyone coming to my house, so I have been donating everything to Good Will, Salvation Army, dog stuff to our humane society, etc. Anything valued at $100 or less isn't worth my time to try to sell.

As for filling up landfills, I recycle everything that is recyclable. Unfortunately, some things have to be thrown in the trash, but I carefully consider every purchase made from here on out, thinking about where it will end up.
 
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