Clearing the clutter

I found out a bit belatedly that yesterday was “Giving Tuesday”. At first, I thought it was odd time to have it in light of the Black Friday and Cyber Monday madness just before it; but what better way to properly kick off the holiday season than with a day geared towards promoting the non-commercial part of the holiday spirit? It was also a good segue in to what I had been drafting the past few days…

A couple times a year I try to go through the storage room, bookshelves, and closets to clear out anything we/I don’t need or use. As of January, we will no longer be in our current apartment, so this is one of those times. The past few weeks have been about sorting through everything. Ruthlessly. In triple time.

Clearing the clutter is very freeing. That, and the hope that what we consider excess and decide to donate will be needed items for others are making the process of moving more tolerable.

In the yoga sutras (something I have dived back in to studying lately), clearing the clutter is called aparigraha which is the Sanskrit word for non-possessiveness. The holiday season is a great time of year to be thinking about this because it isn’t just about giving things or money. It could also be about giving your time to a good cause or to be there for someone when they need you.

But it often starts with things. Over the course of a few weeks: One suitcase full of clothes, a backpack, three purses, the weird skillet panini grill thing that was a gift (sorry!) that we have never used, a set of wine glasses, 30 CD’s (yes, we still own CD’s), two bags of miscellaneous stuff, and three bags of novels and cookbooks dropped off at Covenant House and the Salvation Army later, and I have reduced the moving load by at least five large boxes or bins. I haven’t even hit the storage room yet.

The purge has felt good and so has donating the items.

Side note: For those who have gift exchanges coming up or need last minute hostess gifts, it is also the season of the re-gift. Aside from donating your hardly or never used items, re-gifting is also a good way to clear the clutter. No judgment. 😉

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