Three years ago we downsized our house from 3,400 square feet to 1,300 finished square feet. Doing this forced us to clear out over half of our belongings and get intentional about what we wanted to keep in our lives. If you are ready to get rid of half your stuff and take your life back, I’m here to help you out!
Keep in mind, we downsized with kids! That means half the toys, half the clothes…everything. I promise, it’s possible as long as you know where to start.
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You might feel like you’re ready to get rid of half your stuff, but one of the best ways to really get clear on what you want to keep is by having a life plan laid out.
Doing a life plan brain dump is one of the best ways to get clear about the path you want for your life.
Doing a brain dump is super simple. Just grab a pen and piece of paper and set a timer for 2 minutes. During this 2 minuets just write down every single thought you have about what you want for your life.
Once your 2 minutes is up, take a look at your list. Chances are you will start to see some themes emerging.
If you wrote down 7 countries you want to travel to, you can assume that travel is important.
Do your families names or time together seem to be a recurring thing? Then family is one of your top life plan goals.
Now, as you start going through your things, keep your life plan in mind. If you come across a particular item that doesn’t serve you or your life plan, then set it aside to donate, sell or throw away.
Alright, let’s start with the easy stuff, shall we?
More than likely you have certain things in your home that you are just dying to get rid of. Start there!
Clearing away the easy stuff will help you feel like you’ve made a big dent. Plus, you’ll be one step closer to getting rid of half your stuff!
After you’ve cleared through the easy things, plan on getting rid of things you have more than one of.
For some reason, all the doubles seem to be hiding out in the kitchen. But that doesn’t always have to be the case.
If you are hoping to live with less, then be honest about all the excess that you already have.
Paper clutter can be one of the most overwhelming things to get rid of because somehow it just keep accumulating!
My best solution for this is to clear the clutter before it takes hold!
There is a great system called The Paperless Home that teaches you how to file all of your important papers digitally. Not only does this help you clear our half your stuff, but it gives you access to everything you need in one convenient location.
Have you used this item in the last year? If not, it’s time to get rid of it.
This is usually the time when people start to justify themselves hanging onto a certain thing. In reality, if you haven’t used it in the last year, you probably won’t be using it again.
Have you ever played that game where someone asks a question and you don’t think you just answer?
Well, you can do this with your stuff too. It’s like the 5-second rule for decluttering. Just start tossing items into a “keep” or “discard” bin and don’t give your brain time to think about it.
This is a genius way for getting rid of half your stuff fast!
Some people might think it’s a little “hokey,” but I swear by the KonMari method where to hold your items to see if they spark joy or not.
Tom and I did this when we got rid of half the clothes in our closet (or at least it seemed like it)!
Now, you know what makes getting rid of half your stuff a lot easier? When you can make some cold hard cash from it!
Here are some great ideas on places where you can start to sell your various items.
Media and Books
One thing I do all the time is plan on selling things and then they sit around my house because I never actually sell them.
Avoid this by making a “time stamp” on your items. Set a sell-by date and stick to it! This is a great way to avoid clutter sitting in your house for longer than you want it to.
Sometimes keeping bulky furniture items can make our space look more cluttered than it actually is.
If you have furniture or decor that aren’t serving a purpose, try selling them on Facebook Marketplace and then donating them to Goodwill if they don’t sell.
Even if you feel like you got rid of half your stuff, there is this weird thing that happens. You start to need stuff less and less.
Every time you get rid of stuff it makes it so much easier to get rid of even more. That’s why it’s important to keep re-evaluating the stuff you have to determine whether or not you are ready to get rid of more.
Choosing a designated bin to drop unwanted items in throughout the month is a genius idea. Instead of doing one big clean sweep, you can casually discard unwanted items throughout the month and then make one easy trip to your local donation center.
After you have gotten rid of half your stuff, don’t think you can just go ahead and replace all that stuff with new stuff!
Avoiding piling new clutter in your home. You can do this by declining gifts at Christmas or your birthday, stop making impulse purchases and always remind yourself of the life plan you laid out. If something doesn’t help your plan, then you don’t need it.
If you have a family, encourage to take some of these same steps with you. Who knows, your kids might even like being involved in the process!
If there are certain items you are forced to keep like a lawnmower, power tools or a snowblower, consider renting these items out.
Renting out your items can be a great way to make an extra income and make you feel better about the items you’ve hung onto!