Are you looking forward to spring shopping but you know for a fact that your closet can’t take it anymore?
Well, it’s a familiar feeling especially for those who feel the need to shop for every occasion and season.
If you really feel the need to upgrade your closet with spring gear, you definitely have to make room.
De-cluttering your closet is quite a challenge especially if you normally tend to form emotional attachments to your stuff.
To some, this may turn out to be a genuine struggle hence the need to let in a professional. We understand if it’s difficult for you so we take the process a step at a time and help you see reason when choosing the infamous; trash, keep and donate pile.
Going through your storage may means a few hours to some and a few days for others.
Elsa Elbert, who is a Los Angeles professional organizer, is here to help with 8 key questions to ask yourself while going through clothes and stuff in your closet.
1. Does it Fit?
Are you still holding on to that pretty black dress that you wore while you were 100 pounds? If you haven’t gone back to that size in the past few years then it simply means that the dress has been wasting closet space for far too long. It’s time to let it go. Pile on everything that you no longer wear, breathe in, picture the new stuff that’s going to occupy that space and toss them into the ‘give away’ pile. See? This can be a fun and easy.
2. Does it Still Make Sense?
True, those bills and letters from the bank made sense when the news was fresh but are they of any use now? Studies show that people tend to hold on to past documents especially if they bore vital information at some point in time. Once things have served their purpose, they need to get discarded. It’s the rule of nature. So pick up the ‘trash it’ basket and pile on the old school newsletters, old bills, advertising fliers and any other paperwork that long served its purpose.
3. Does it Still Work?
With the technology craze going on in today’s world, we are constantly upgrading our gadgets and appliances. Once you replace an item, it is best that you get rid of the old one. Unfortunately, this stuff often finds its way back to our storage spaces. It’s time to let go of the dead tablets, the web of phone chargers, old kitchen appliances, gadget parts and any other thing you might be holding on to. If the old fashioned TV still works but hasn’t been used since you bought the new one then it’s time to donate it. There are a lot of people in the world who’d really use it.
4. Does It Make Sense?
There’s a single sheet, a lone sock, ill fitting underwear, lids to missing containers, depleted product containers and irreparable shoe in almost all hoarders closets. Although new and cute, we know that they’ll never be used again. In this case, it is time to let go of this stuff and make room for new bedding, shoes, and underwear. Donate the lone sheets and trash the lids.
5. Does it Belong?
Another effective technique to help get rid of old stuff is to envision it in the stores right now. Hold it in your hands and be genuine when asking yourself “would I buy it now?”. A tea kettle cover may have made sense back in the day but it should have been disposed of when you stopped using the tea kettle.
Do you really need the old fashioned cowboy hat that you wore back in the 60’s? Do you see yourself wearing it outdoors anytime soon? If the answer is no then you know what to do. I cannot count the number of times that people bargain and try to convince themselves that they’ll wear such items. If you haven’t found use for it for at least 12 months then it needs to go.
6. Do They Still Need It?
Every parent sees their child as a baby no matter how grown they are. We tend to attach most emotions in our kid’s items. That tiny sock reminds you of how snugly your child would fit in the palm of your hands. It’s cute and understandable but aren’t the pictures of your newborn son in your family album a better memory? Now that your little prince has advanced to a big boy bed now means that it’s time for his crib, bedding and overhead mobile to find a new home. Gather all their kiddie toys and equipment and put them in the donate pile.
7. Really Now?
Some things really don’t belong in our homes let alone our storage spaces. Items such as expired makeup, empty nail polish containers, depleted lotion tubes and product boxes. There’s absolutely no good reason as to why this completely useless stuff still exists in our homes. They should have found their way to the trash can immediately their purpose seized. Anyway, the point of the matter is, throw them away.
8. Is Safe for Use?
Take a mental trip to your pantry. Are there expired spices and sauces in there? If it took you more than 10 seconds to give an answer then you know that they exist. It doesn’t necessarily mean that you are a hoarder, some stuff just gets forgotten in there and before we know it, they are past their expiry date. Make it a rule to clean out your pantry whenever you’re going grocery shopping. While arranging the new stuff, ensure that you put the old ingredients at the front so that they get exhausted before opening the new cans and bottles.
How to Hire a Professional Organizer
Spring cleaning is a therapeutic exercise. I understand that this may be an emotional venture for you especially if the stuff seems to hold sentimental value to you. Truth be told, everyone feels much better after bagging their old and no longer useful stuff. That is a great reason why you should hire a professional organizer is helpful since they have an easier time getting rid of your stuff. You’ll tend to feel happier and more accomplished after making all those difficult decisions and breaking invisible cords of attachment with your items.