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Monday, July 11, 2016

Organization is Just Another Word for Hoarding!

I've been spending a lot of time thinking about minimalism.  It's something that used to repel me, but now obsesses me.  Minimalism is the practice of just possessing what you need.  The style is spare and muted.  I guess it is not really only a style, but a lifestyle of mindfulness.  I came across some pins of it on Pinterest and kept going back to it.  I have been reading blogs, looking at pictures, and pinning quotes like the title one.  For me, it is true. I used the guise of "getting organized" to make my hoard seem okay.  It's not. I can't find a thing when I need it.  Or I dig through my "stuff" and I find the searched for item and it too old, wrinkled, dirty, or just plain ruined.

It goes deeper than this though. My whole family are hoarders!  Okay, maybe we are walking through paths of newspapers and sleeping on couches, but we can't throw "good" stuff out.  My sister has learned to, but can't stop buying toys and clothes for her kids.  Then, she gives me half of the toys to store at my house.  My mom buys expensive items often. She then dumps her clothes, bags, towels, and other old stuff on me.  Did I ever buy a towel?  How many thousand dollars have we spent on purses, shoes, and make up that we didn't need? My brother is the worst.  As a shop owner, he has the ability to sell things every day.  So when I try to throw my junk in the garbage, he tried to stop me.  He also uses my PACKED, but huge garage to store things.  So today, I'm getting ready for garbage tomorrow. I'm trying to throw away everything from old books, clothes, and even old stamps that I got from the flea market in a lot and never used.  We're taking about teddy bear rubber stamps that I really would never use. He stopped me.  I again heard that excuse that his friend takes things and resells them.  I finally said, "Call him right now, if they aren't out of here tomorrow-they're on the curb."  He did try to sell some of my used books on eBay.  Yep, about 20 of them sold for .99 cents today.  Wow, we almost made a dollar.  My aunt offered to take a bag or two of books to her library.  Well, I've probably gotten rid of about 700 or more.  Most of them are true crime, classics, teaching, and the rest are "How-to's"... The Internet has made them all obsolete.  Really, I would rather look up something online or watch a video then spend hours searching through my old books. Do I still love my books? Yes.  I've kept far too many that I can't part with yet.  I kept some that were gifts. However, I realized that many of them are not even my books. They were given to me.  I am tired of the guilt of books I meant to read, but have no interest in reading. I need the space for my massive amount of art supplies.  I did take pictures of somethings I had trouble parting with. Then I put the books in the stack.  It is sad to me that no one wants my precious books. I guess we could drop them off at Good Will.

 I did purchase and read The Life-Changing Magic of Tidying Up by Marie Kondo.  I read the book in two days.  It's strange but without reading the book, I had already followed her plan by cleaning out my clothes the way she suggested.  I actually dumped everything in my living room and sorted it from there.  Then, I did my books. I am on my art supplies now.  Marie's premise is to touch each item and see if it gives you a spark of joy. If not, ditch it.  I became a huge fan when she said to throw away all of your papers.  They are a nightmare to sort and to find things. Really, she said to even toss owner's manuals because now they are all online! So true.  I have pay stubs from 2007. Why? Because I keep everything.  So I quickly tossed old bills into my massive "to burn" pile. I'm excited to follow more of her advice like you don't need to keep sentimental items.  I've been taking pictures of things and then throwing them out.  

I have a huge amount of scrapbooking supplies. I also have a lot of drawing, paining, beading, and then sewing supplies.  I am in the process of boxing up everything and trying to wedge it in my garage.  I cannot express how great it feels to have some emptiness!  I feel like my clutter was sapping my energy.  I haven't touched the kitchen yet. I am looking forward to that.  My mom has given my all types of pots, pans, and crockpots. I hate crockpots. I live alone and don't like making large portions of food.  So why do I have like three crockpots? I almost feel like my house has taken over my life.  If I didn't love it so much, I would move into a small apartment or tiny house! Since I have boxed up most of my supplies, I am itching to paint and sew.  I did make some soap from a soap kit.  I fantasize about globs of paint on a canvas and sewing hems.  I can't quit art.  It pursues me wherever I go.

It's the middle of July and I have so much left to do.  Ironically, I feel like by the time I get this house in order, I'll be back in school and too busy to create.  I want to structure my whole life differently though. Exercise before school, get a lot more done in school, and have time to myself at night.  Tied down by less things I hope to have more time. I really think I spend half my time looking for things. I have a lot of work to do before I can call myself a minimalist.  However, I did clear off my work desk.  It looks beautiful!