There are many reasons to minimize belongings. Life changes such as downsizing after a move or becoming an empty nester means sometimes finding yourself in a situation where minimizing is necessary. Here are tips to make that transition as seamless as possible.
- Start early, and begin small with one room at a time. It’s important to plan ahead so you don’t get overwhelmed and feel rushed. It can be emotionally draining to sort through your belongings and determine which ones will be going to your new space.
- Determine your needs: Empty nesters may find they no longer need multiples of certain items. If you’re downsizing to a smaller home, you may no longer need guest bedroom furniture, extra sets of towels or multiple sofas.
- How long has it been? Ask yourself if you’ve used the item recently. Chances are if it’s been in storage for a year or more, you’re not going to use it again.
- Digitize what you can. Scan photos and other important documents to eliminate paper clutter.
- Make “yes” and “no” piles. To make sorting easier, create two piles for what stays or goes. No “maybes.”
- Seek a second opinion: Have a neutral party available when sorting through personal belongings. Other family members may not be the best judge of what stays and what goes. Ask a friend or consider hiring a professional organizer to guide you through the process.