So, you just got into your new place. Once the last box gets off the…
The new year is a great time to start the decluttering process. Part of the new year, new you is leaving old things behind. You may not realize it but being surrounded by old junk that you no longer need can have an emotional impact on you and prevent you from making other desired changes. So start out 2023 in a fresh way by going through your stuff and getting rid of things you no longer need. Hitch it or haul it!
There is a very well-known professional organizer who thinks that starting the decluttering process means looking for things that bring you joy. However, we do not think that is a great way to declutter your home. We use items every day that do not bring us joy. But, one of the benefits of decluttering is that it can help get rid of things that you do not need or enjoy.
Recycling and Upcycling
When you want to get a fresh start, you also want to make good choices about getting rid of your stuff. While throwing everything away might save you time, it is not the best choice of the environment. So, you should make plans for items you can donate, recycle, or update. You may also want to plan a garage sale, though it is not a great time of year for that. Do you have a storage space where you can keep those items for an early spring garage sale?
Deciding What to Keep
Instead of looking at what brings you joy, many organizers use the RFASR approach.
- R- Recency
- F- Frequency
- Acquisition Value
- S- Storage Cost
- R- Retrieval Cost
When was the last time you used the item? If you used it recently, you should keep it.
How often do you use it? The more often you use something, the more likely you are to keep it. Of course, you have to keep its purpose in mind. For example, you may use holiday decorations only once per year, but still enjoy having and using them.
If you have not used something recently and do not use it frequently, then you might consider getting rid of it. To help you make that decision, you look at the acquisition value. How much will it cost to buy or rent the item if you need to use it? You might get rid of less expensive items that you can easily replace but keep more expensive items. If you have a high-dollar item that you think you may use again in the future but do not regularly use, you might consider sharing it with friends or neighbors.
Are you spending money to store these items? If so, what are you spending to store it? Some people have items like boats, RVs, or other toys that they pay to store. If you do not use them frequently, they can cost much more than you realize. On the other hand, you might consider moving some things to storage. For example, getting usage of your garage may make it worthwhile to pay for storage of things like a boat or motorcycle.
While retrieval costs seem like the cost to reacquire the item, they are actually related to the costs to keep the products current. Is the item outdated?