Stuff. It can be overwhelming sometimes. For me, this month has brought about an enormous amount of decisions. You see, my beloved father died a few weeks ago. I tell you this not to garner sympathy, but to share what I have learned.
Dad still lived in the home he and Mom shared, so now my brothers and I are sorting the contents of the house. Organizing fifty-eight years of their memories takes time and energy, and produces a huge swing of emotions. My hope for you is that you can take away some insight from my experience in this process. Here is a bit of what I have learned.
1. You don’t have to talk yourself into the right decisions. This is not an original thought, I actually heard Tom Selleck say it on his current TV show. Try applying this rule when you must make a difficult decision. I have a piano and so did my Mom. I can’t keep both, so how do I choose which one to keep? Mine has good tone; Mom’s is a prettier piece of furniture. I agonized over this, until I realized the only way to keep both pianos in the family would be to give Mom’s to my cousin. My distress subsided, because I knew I had made the right decision.
2. If everything is precious, nothing is precious. Huh? Look at it like this. If I wrote a paragraph, and made all of it bold, italic and underlined, nothing would stand out. There would be no emphasis. The same is true of our belongings. If an item holds special meaning, then honor it. Make it stand out. If you don’t have room to store something, get rid of another item that is not precious to make room.
3. Take a break. Let the solution come to you. During the process of going through my Mom’s things, I inherited 3 set of dishes. Yes, I love all three of them. My husband was doubtful that I could make room. I knew I could let go of enough of what I already had to make room, but I had to do this in stages. Once I found homes for most everything, then I gave myself a break. A couple of days later a solution came bubbling up in my consciousness. There are a couple of top-shelf spots in my kitchen that need some attention. My next job is to purge those, and the excess from round one of my organizing project will magically fit. And my husband doubted me!