Friday, February 18, 2022

Declutter, organize, simplify or all 3?

 I was washing out a couple of kitchen drawers when it dawned on me that my frustration with them was due to having things I used very often mixed with those that were only used occasionally. I moved the occasional use items to a less convenient drawer and it has made a difference not having to sort through so much each t8me I reach for something. I’ve now applied the same principle to my sewing/mending supplies and it worked again. No decluttering the things now organized by frequency of use makes my life simpler.

On the other hand I was pulling out some manila envelopes to organize our fire safe paperwork when I saw that I had saved a big pile of sheet protector pages although I rarely need one. All but a small number went into the donation pile.

It seems that for me this combination approach along with revisiting how much “inventory” we want to keep on hand is the way to go. Some of our stocking up during the pandemic has left too many items stored and that is going to change too.

How are you managing your “stuff” at this point in your life to ensure that it isn’t increasing your mental and physical workload? Are actual or anticipated shortages causing you to still stockpile or are you moving back to pre-pandemic inventory levels?

13 comments:

  1. I totally agree. I've made the decision to NOT stockpile but really look at what we use. I read a lot of blogs and there are still some people stockpiling for a YEAR! Most of it is food I wouldn't use like Knorr packets etc. But everyone has their own reasons. As I try to be as minimal as possible, I don't want to have huge stockpiles. Now with decluttering, I just keep moving along and always am looking at our space and how to get it to function better/simply. Your re-looking at your utensil drawer is a great example.

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    1. I like thinking about how a space could function better. I've been looking at the empty drawers in the small bedroom end table and thinking about what could they be used for that would simplify another space.

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  2. TOTALLY agree about keeping often-used kitchen utensils in one space and less-often used in another. My challenge is that my husband does not understand the difference. I've tried showing, he just gets frustrated. He is very good about washing up after dinner, so I don't want to ruin a good thing. But boy do I go crazy when I have to hunt my tools down while trying to prepare a meal. He doesn't cook, so doesn't really understand different tools for different tasks. I've tried equating the kitchen to his workshop, but no dawning light of understanding. I've come to accept that my searching is usually a lot less trouble than losing his willing clean up help.

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  3. Hmmm, really I am still adding to my pantry, mainly because of price increases and the fact that since the silly truckers shut down some border crossings causing shortages. I am trying to use up my yarn stash (way too large) and fabric stashes. I am even seriously considering downsizing my sewing machines (though that could cause me a bit of grief).

    I do think some of our extra items could go to Kris for his new home.

    God bless.

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  4. I had 3 kitchen drawers with utensils and small kitchen gadgets. Like you, I pared down (to one), and put the rest of the items in containers which I stashed away. I have only used 2 or 3 of those items in the last 2 years. Time for them to go! (Realistically, do I need a candy thermometer or a crinkle cutter?)
    -Dar @ anexactinglife

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    1. The last 2 years have been an aberrant blip in my opinion so I am trying to remember what I used when we were entertaining or having guests stay for a while. I hope we will eventually be back to that and then I can reassess.

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  5. Decluttering is an ongoing endeavor in this house. Yesterday I moved a tote to the to-go pile and by the end of the day, I had been gifted a new one! The battle continues!

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    1. That is pretty funny but it does make it a battle.

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  6. When we moved into our smaller home, I was forced to get honest about what we actually need. One thing that I did was to eliminate duplicates (I had way too much stuff.) It was almost painful, at first, but I forced myself to pare way down. So far, I haven't missed anything and life feels so much simpler with fewer things. The new challenge seems to be acquiring only what we really love and need. I continue to keep a donation box handy so I have a place for those items. Juhli, I'm glad you mentioned organizing your sewing/mending supplies. I still haven't tackled mine. Everything is willy nilly in a tote. I need to work on it!

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  7. I'm spending time trying to use better organizing methods first. I don't know that I need to declutter as such. I'm not stocking up but am adding more canned souls and fruits and veggies and also frozen so if those are the only things I n3ed I can delay a store trip.

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  8. I bounce between being a maximalist and wanting to be a minimalist. I have far too much stuff. But I rationalize that it is all paid for and why should I get rid of it if I still like it? This spring, I do want to consider a lot of things very carefully and decide if I need them or want them or if someone else could better use them.

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    1. It is important to have a true "why" before removing things from our lives. Thinking carefully is a good idea.

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