Declutter

A large part of my mental comfort insists on my apartment being orderly. I’ve read or heard it described somewhere that the wide variety of environments we inhabit each day have both positive and negative affects on our moods and mind. It would seem that acute attention should be paid to designing a stimulating and supportive primary living space.

When I walk into a room, especially one that I know well, open spaces and the familiarity of a few cherished mementos placed thoughtfully is a deep and genuine welcome to me. The warm sense that even space and inanimate objects acknowledge my presence and invite me with emptiness is a happy and comfortable feeling indeed.

I think the visualization of space in one’s environment is a intriguing concept. When I see a plane (like one of my tables) inhabited by, say, a tiny outcropping of trail-gathered rocks arranged around the base of a stylish antique lamp, I like to imagine space as an infinitely drape-able shape, like a fabric or a fog, just smothering everything with nothing.

But those decorative little items disturb the heavy layer of space. They poke into the fabric and create bumps. This visualization I feel calls attention to the relation a particular object has with its environment. Once isolated, the continued existence of clutter can clearly be evaluated.

The wrinkle here is that leading up to today there’s been an uncomfortably noticeable portion of each morning dedicated to harrowed, critical evaluation of the clutter that simply sits around my apartment.

It attracted my attention with gravity. Coming from the closet, fixing food, then back into the closet to agonizingly decide the fate of yet another Thing. With a process like that, and hundreds more items to wade through, no wonder my mornings could feel so terse and punctured.

Something had to change!

Condensing my non-exhaustive list of options for getting rid of things, I could:

  • Donate it to a thrift shop or charity
  • Sell on Craigslist or eBay
  • Just throw it away

Because I hate to lose money and apparently can tolerate the added stress of clutter sitting around a little longer I chose to:

  1. Sell the moderately more expensive electronics and household items on CL — avoids both the high shipping rates for selling large items and also eBay & PayPal seller fees
  2. List smaller and more unique junk items on eBay — can list more obscure and collectable things at higher prices to a wider audience
  3. Donate larger household items and worthless knickknacks to a local thrift shop — difficult to sell items are jettisoned to the next eager owner!

A positive note on selling via Craigslist:  The buyer comes to pick the item up, no need to haul or ship it anywhere!

And, bonus, there’s actually a fourth method:  I’ll be listing large, potentially donation-marked items on Craigslist for a price of free. This is a way to quickly make something heavy disappear with minimal effort.

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