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Notes From The Doctor

Get Organized When You’re Feeling Sentimental About Your Clutter

Sentimental about clutter? Sounds a little crazy doesn’t it? But it’s really not as odd as it may seem. It’s very common to have lots of motivation and get started organizing your home or closet, only to find yourself too sentimental about your things to get rid of anything.

We’re serious about closet organization here at The Closet Doctor, but If you’re like me, you might still find the closet to be one of the most difficult places to organize. I’ll get started with great intentions, and then only a few items in find myself saying “I can’t get rid of this, it’s too special, because _____” insert whatever ridiculous or not, reason I feel at the moment. Whether it be the tshirt my parents brought me back from a trip close to 20 years ago, or a dress my husband bought me that I never wear because it just doesn’t fit, it can be hard to let go without feeling guilty, even when there really is no reason to hang onto it.

Here four simple rules for organizing when you’re feeling sentimental

  1. Look to the future

Imagine yourself in 1 years’ time, if you don’t get rid of the item, where will it be? Will it still be in the same place unused and untouched? If you were to get rid of it, would you even remember or notice it was gone in a year’s time?

  1. Preserve the Memory

If the item holds a special sentimental memory, but you know you aren’t going to wear or use it, take a picture of it! We live in a time with so much technology all around us, and one great thing about digital photos is that they don’t take up any physical space. So snap a picture on your smartphone or digital camera, save the picture away so that you have the memory, and donate or recycle your item. If an item is especially important or holds very special memories, you could

  1. Donate to a good cause

If you are finding it hard to let go, find a good charity to donate your items to. Knowing that your things can get new life and help a good cause at the same time, helps letting go be just a little easier. Find a good local charity that you have faith in. One here in Lincoln is The Salt Mine. Another great charity is, Dress for Success it is a fabulous place to donate your gently used clothing to. If you’re looking for something meaningful to do with your wedding dress, a program like Angel Gowns is a really special idea. Just rememebr, it’s better for your clothing and household items to be used rather than sit around serving no purpose other than a memory.

  1. Set it aside

If you’re still having trouble, even with knowing you won’t need or use it, you’ve taken a picture for memory, knowing it will go to a good cause, and you still can’t bring yourself to let it go, set it aside. Make a designated bin, bag, or area, that you can put items like this that you just don’t feel ready to get rid of yet. Put all of the things there together that you’re having a hard time getting rid of, label the bin or bag incase you forget what it is so you dont have to sort it again, and then come back to it in a few days, weeks, or even a month or so. If you find that in that time you haven’t needed or reached for that item, take a moment to realize that you will be okay without it, and that you will actually be better off because you’ll have more space and less clutter!

If you follow these rules, you should be able to minimize the extra things in your closet, and achieve a clean organized closet. If you need help designing your closet to help you to get organized:

Click to see some of our closet designs

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