Spring is here once again and with it comes the need to declutter. I find each spring that I have accumulated more and more stuff over the course of the year. Getting rid of stuff which we have paid good money for is not always easy but too often we allow ourselves to hold on to items which no longer serve us a valuable purpose. With this in mind, I set out to declutter my room and my life.
I try to recycle as much of my waste as I can, so I started with the piles of papers which build up around me. The stuff is everywhere; the eternal art supplies, lyric sheets, magazines, old photographs, receipts, and note paper. I gathered together all the paper I could find (I’m sure there must be another folder or two hiding somewhere) and set about sorting it between the recycling bin and a small school folder. Right now, my recycling bin has papers sliding off the top and onto the floor. The ‘keeping’ folder isn’t even half full.
What took me the longest was sorting through the shelf of old magazines gathering dust behind the couch. Some I chucked immediately (movie news that went out of date years ago) while others I set aside to keep. This time, I was left with a large pile of magazines that I was supposed to hang on to. It was still too much, as the point of this exercise was to cut down my paper stack to the minimum. I realized that I didn’t need the entire stack of magazines, just the articles which I would want to read again or that I had not yet read but would like to do so. I grabbed a pair of scissors and a handful of paper clips and set to work cutting out those articles which caught my eye. I now have one magazines worth of articles which interest me, rather than a dozen magazines with all their unwanted articles and ads.
I have always been a person who collects trinkets and junk in the guise of art supplies, but recently I have come to realize that when I cut the clutter from my life, those possessions that remain hold more value to me. It is not easy to cut back, the voice in my head tells me that I will use that box of wire for a project one day or that maybe I will need my old phone again one day. This voice is simply afraid to let go and I will do my best to ignore him in the future. I would like to leave you with a quote by William Morris: