My Predilection to Collection.

I was raised to save things. My parents had a garage full of antique car parts, scrap lumber, old toys, antique lighting, 80's camping equipment, bikes, tricycles, paints, extension cords, garden hoses, spare tires, motor oil, nuts, bolts, odds, ends…

Don’t get me wrong, my parents are by no means pack rats, but they loved to save stuff. Sadly, I inherited my parents predilection to collection, and as a result, I had too much stuff.

I had a breaking point and wanted to burn it all, but instead, I rage cleaned.

I gave away most of my shirts, jackets, pairs of pants and shoes, sheets, games, furniture, books, hats, toys, and knick knacks. If it was sentimental, I took a picture, and sent it off (save a few small pieces I couldn’t stomach getting rid of). It took me a half-dozen trips to Goodwill in the ol’ Corolla, but I got rid of more than half my stuff.

On my way home from the last drop-off I was afraid my once cozy apartment would feel empty and lonely, but to my surprise, it was quite the opposite. I felt zen. I felt composed. I felt organized. I felt like Steve Jobs in that one photo of him chillin in his empty apartment.

Since the deep purge of 2011, I’ve continued my quest for getting rid of stuff by giving away anything I haven’t used for 3 months. Of course, there are exceptions, but I try to follow the rule as strictly as possible. It’s an incredibly freeing experience.

I implore you, dear reader, to give it a try.

Too afraid to do it for your whole apartment or home? Pick a room or “type of thing” (clothing/appliances/knick-knacks) and start there. If it’s sentimental, take a picture of it. If you’re really struggling, collect everything you would get rid of, toss it all into garbage bags, and hide it in the basement. You’ll find you won’t miss it and are happy to be rid of it.