The title might be a little hyperbolic, but only a little bit. It is super hard to throw away things, even things that you know you don’t need. In fact, things you know you don’t need are often harder to throw away than things you might need because you will invent the excuse necessary to justify keeping it. The less something is used, the more convinced we are that it will ultimately be used. That’s what I am here to help with, got to get you to admit that maybe you don’t need twenty years-worth of Cosmopolitan.
Toss the Magazines
I opened with this, you just don’t need twenty years-worth of any magazine. In fact, you don’t even really need a years-worth of magazines. Try to cull your collection back to the last two-months. Unless your home is also a doctor’s office, you can make do with less on this front. Add to that any newspaper more than a week old. We all know traditional news-media is dying anyway, if you read something interesting in there it is online.
Make-Up Needs Rotation
I have never really been one for make-up, but you should replace make-up to prevent infections – especially stuff that goes around your eyes. About twice a year you should toss old make-up and get some new stuff. For some this will be an extravagance, for others this will mean cutting back on make-up purchases. Try to find that happy medium.
Toss the Uni-tasking Kitchen Tools
I subscribe to the Alton Brown school of thought when it comes to kitchen appliances: if it’s only good for one thing, I don’t need it in my kitchen. That means pizza slicers, bread makers, pizza stones, pizza ovens, deep-fryers, popcorn poppers can all be tossed. Odds are that if you have half of those things, your kitchen will feel a whole lot bigger once they are gone. Be honest, you used those things like twice.
Sports You Don’t Even Play
You know those bright two-pound weights you have from your power-walking phase? Oh, what about the mini-trampoline from your home aerobics days? That ab roller you used for a week? What about the cleats you got after Mexico beat Germany in the World Cup? Go ahead, toss them. I know you’re holding onto them so you don’t feel like a quitter, but just toss them.
Just stop reading at the end of this sentence, and check sell by dates on your spice rack, I’ll wait. Yea…it wasn’t good, was it? The potency of most spices in cooking comes from smell, and smell goes away quickly. A good solution for a lot of things is to have an herb garden in the window or on the patio. Fresh herbs that will never go bad. Also, it’s self-replenishing.
I know you have a drawer that is nothing but cords, some of them are power cords, some of them are bungee cords. Doesn’t really matter what kind of cords they are, let me ask this: do you know what all of them are for? If not, you probably don’t need it or the thing it goes to so go ahead and put it in the pile.
If It’s Broke
Why are you holding on to the VCR player that only eats your tapes? Better question: why do you have a VCR player to begin with? If the object in question is broken or generationally dated, the time has come. Play Danny Boy, and let the pipes call it home.
Those Jnco Jeans
Know those clothes you never wear, and I don’t mean like special occasion clothing. I mean like you have a closet with forty T-shirts in it. The time has come, but be sure to donate those. Clothes should always go to someone less fortunate than yourself. Throw into that pile mismatched socks. Give up hope that the other one is going to turn up. This isn’t Homeward Bound, that sock is not going to appear on the hilltop. It is time to move on.
There is a lot of stuff that you can honestly do without, that you really have been doing without in a real way for years. It’s just taking up space that could be given to stuff that you use. Take the time to sort through what you need and what you don’t before you and your home end up on Hoarders.
If you do find yourself with a lot of memorabilia or things with a lot of sentimental value, be sure to check out some self-storage units near you . If it turns out that you are the only person who really needs twenty years-worth of a magazine, store it here and no one will judge you.