After living 15 years in the same house, we’re moving. Oh my, the STUFF we’ve collected and stored.
So the process begins. Last night, I was packing up my kitchen with my daughter-in-law. The cabinets were full of cookbooks I’ve never cracked open, expired food in the pantry, small kitchen appliances I never used, and then there was the dreaded “junk drawer.” As I was filling up trash bags and putting aside things to sell, I felt incredibly FREE.
Why hadn’t I done this sooner?
In fact, why do we Americans love to collect stuff? A Self Storage Association study showed that by 2007, the normal family in the middle of a move that was using storage short-term did not represent most of their clients anymore. Half of renters were simply storing what wouldn’t fit in their homes, even though the size of the average American house had almost doubled in the previous 50 years. These clients, who often pay $1000 a year or more to store their excessive belongings, are contributing to a $154 billion industry.
Those who don’t rent storage units are packing clutter into their homes. The U.S. Department of Energy reported that one-quarter of people with two-car garages have so much stuff that they can’t park a car inside. Another study reported 23 percent of adults say they pay bills late and incur fees because they lose them.
Why are we doing this to ourselves when cleaning out all that clutter is so beneficial?
Think about it. Conquering clutter can clear the way for a more productive life. Without physical obstructions like piles of unopened mail, old clothes, and Tupperware without lids getting in the way, you can get organized and do more in less time.