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Decluttering with heart: Honouring memories without the clutter

Apr 21, 2024

Letting go as a gain not a loss.

If you’re overwhelmed by the piles of sentimental items in your home, you're not alone. Many of us struggle with the guilt and obligation of parting with gifts from loved ones or family heirlooms. However, it’s crucial to remember that true memories and affection are not housed in these objects but within our experiences and relationships.

Understanding Emotional Attachments

It's natural to feel a strong emotional attachment to items given to us by people we care about. But when these items start to clutter our space, they can also clutter our minds, making it hard to enjoy our homes or live comfortably. The key is to distinguish between honouring a person and keeping every item associated with them. After all, those who care about us wouldn’t want their gifts to cause us stress or discomfort.

Practical Steps to Declutter with Sensitivity

1. Create a digital memory album: For items that hold sentimental value but are impractical to keep, take photos or videos and store them in a digital album on your phone— name it "Things I Love". This way, you preserve the memory and free up physical space. It's much easier to look at it on your phone than in a bin in the garage.  Do this for cards, trophies, linens....anything that you don't use but want not to take up room in your home.

2. Reflect thoughtfully on each item: Handle each item and ask yourself:
- Does this bring me joy, and am I using it?
- Am I keeping this out of love or obligation?
- What's the worst that could happen if I let it go, and can I live with that outcome?

3. Open conversations: If you're concerned about offending the giver by letting go of an item, consider explaining your feelings to them. Share your desire for a simpler, more peaceful living environment and how you're cherishing their gift in a new way (like through a photo). Record them telling you the story of why it's so meaningful to them—share this anytime you want when it's on your phone.

4. Rehome with purpose: Look for a new home for the items you choose to let go—perhaps another family member would value it, or it could be appreciated  by someone in need via a donation.

5. Build a Support System: Decluttering can be an emotional process, so don’t hesitate to reach out for support from friends, family, or professionals who can offer encouragement and help keep you on track.

6. Start Small: Begin with one item or one area. Each small success builds momentum and reinforces your confidence in making decisions that benefit your well-being.

Final Thoughts

Releasing items from your life doesn't mean discarding the memories or the love associated with them. It’s about making space for new experiences and enjoying a more manageable, joyful living environment. By honouring your own needs and the original loving intent of gift-givers, you create a space that truly feels like home.

Remember, every item you choose to keep or let go of is a step towards reclaiming your space and peace of mind. So take a breath and let go- I'm always cheering you on, and you have permission.


Xo Meg

Read through all of the steps above. Then start organizing an area of your home. Scroll down for products to help you get the job done!
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