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Can you believe it’s almost the end of May? Five months have flown by!

Over the last few weeks it’s become clear that I have too much stuff and it’s in a state of disarray on top of it!. In a more serious effort to simplify my life I’ve tried to accomplish this by myself but found my knee really limited me. So I called a gentleman we’ll call Fred.

First met Fred when I closed my store. He was the driver for the moving company and disclosed to me that he moonlighted in his off hours helping people to clear storage units, hauling junk away for them and so on. Well, a few years ago I decided that storage was a waste of money and only useful for the short term. One needn’t save everything.

Sadly, I inherited this malady from my mother just like psoriasis from my dear old dad. Thanks guys. Fred was incredibly useful, asking just the right questions to help me let go of things that no longer served me. He’s obviously had a lot of experience in this area. But his help didn’t come cheaply. The experience made me realize that if you tallied up the costs of storage and going through the junk in order to dump it at a later date, you would come out ahead tossing the item(s) from the start.

The expense to actually replace an item you felt “you simply couldn’t live without”, was far less than long term storage. Plus, the odds of ever actually “needing” a particular item or items is extremely low. The end result was not only a useless financial burden but a mental one that takes an even greater toll than the loss of money.

Think about it another way…if you really used and enjoyed the item, then maybe it’s time to let it go. It served it’s purpose.

Note:  This does not apply to items that hold memories, but wouldn’t it be cheaper to buy a scanner, pay a teenager and have all your old photos saved on your computer. Heck, for $60/year you could have them saved to a service like, Carbonite.

If it’s something from your Great Grandmother or other beloved relative then do them honor by using it. If you can’t bear to think of using it because you could break it and not be able to replace it, sell it. You still have the memory and you can buy something you’re not afraid to use. Too often we elevate “things” to a level of sacred. It’s another mental trap.

On the other hand there are items you “paid good money for” that you “should” re-sell to recoup some of what was spent. Really? Is that you talking or your mother? Think about it.  Garage sales, even “estate” sales don’t net that much money for a whole day spent putting stuff out, marking it and then getting the unsold balance hauled away.

About 3 years ago I tried one. No one is offering a lot for even the best leather purse, shoes, designer blouse, dining room set and so on. As I recall, my grand total for the day was less than $20. Not even worth the time or the often hostile haggling over five cents!

So with that in mind, I called Fred for help. Unfortunately movers are getting very busy right about now and he had no moonlighting slots open. So he referred a fellow he worked with. Let me make this clear right now, muscle costs you money so the sooner you cart what was going to storage off to the dump instead, the more you’ll save all around.

These kinds of realizations only come with time though. Your mind is a tricky master or mistress and can weave amazing “truths” from the smallest of doubts.

So to this end, on Friday Bob (Fred’s referral) and a “helper” will be here from 9 to 1 and do all the heavy lifting, loading and dumping.

Just so you know, I’ve gone through over eleven versions of the order in which to go through “stuff” and in the end come up frozen, so strong is the grip of “stuff” on me. But the me who had laid an entire brick patio by herself, with three pallets of new brick which I first distressed, can no longer do what that 25 year old could.

The e-waste I have could easily fill my trunk (my car is a four door sedan, so yeah…big trunk) and back seat. But do you know how heavy old PC’s are? Yeah, that’s what I’m talking about. And climbing ladders with this (grumble, grumble) knee is currently not an option, so decisions are being made for me so to speak.

Isn’t it funny how things can “own” us rather than the other way around? Just one more of the mental prisons we can lock ourselves in.

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