I have too much stuff. And one reason I have too much stuff is that I have too much stuff.
I didn’t realize this for a long, long time. What brought it to my attention a few days ago was getting an ad for a yarn sale, 30% off everything. Everything. I came thisclose to ordering some, even though I know I have way too much on hand.
Why didn’t I? Partly, yes, because I’ve been practicing the skill of stepping back and saying “Yeah, but are you really going to use that??” But I think a bigger factor was that I wanted to get yarn for a specific sweater, and I was pretty sure but not certain that I had some of what I needed. I had to check and make sure which colors to buy before placing the order.
And I couldn’t find the yarn I wanted to check on. Because I have so much stuff that there isn’t room to store the yarn in an easy-to-locate way.
A few years ago, I would have shrugged and ordered all of it. This time, I didn’t order any. That’s a step forward. But how do I get the Stuff under control? I’ve got a couple of ideas:
- Spend ten or fifteen minutes, a few times a day, sorting through the piles of paper. (Spending hours on it won’t work; dust allergies and frustration do me in.)
- Take an inventory of things like books and yarn, so that I can avoid buying something I already have. (Of course, that means I need a way to label things as “already inventoried”, or I’m likely to count the same skein of yarn six times.)
But I need help. Does anybody out there who’s naturally organized, or even better, anybody who’s learned the hard way how to get organized, have other suggestions, this side of “Just throw it all away right now”?