Wednesday, January 20, 2016


I know I mentioned it in my New Year's post, but this year, I want to do a "grand purge."  I am by no means a hoarder, but I after looking around a bit, I think I tend to let things linger out of laziness.  In the back of my mind, I always want to be neater, but it has felt elusive and too plain hard.

Now, I'm mostly through this book -


and I'm feeling more hopeful about this process than I ever have before.  I know that I have more stuff than I need - this is probably true of most of North America.  However, I often feel guilt over getting rid of perfectly good things - even if I donate them.  I get bogged down, and then I become paralyzed with indecision.  Then laziness sets in, and status quo remains.

If you're interested in the book - this blog post contains an excellent summation of the main points.  This blogger also addresses what it is like to try to tidy with children in your home in another post, which is a beast that the book does not mention.  The basic premise is to examine EVERY item in your home and ask the question, "Does it spark joy?"  Now - this will work for some and probably not for others  (John thinks it sounds a little crazy, but he is already naturally good at this and doesn't need the help.)  However, it does speak to me.  It has already helped to reframe the way I think about the stuff that I have and about the ways I go about accumulating more stuff.

The book also gives a great road map of HOW.  After reading Seven several years ago, we got rid of some stuff, but it is different to try to do everything all at once and to great purpose.  I'm looking forward to seeing how it goes.  Don't worry.  I will most definitely keep you posted, since I know you are dying to know about my stuff.

For me, there is a trap here, because it would be easy for me to make an idol of something that does sound so magical.  I want the feeling of having things perfectly in order, and then I will feel all better about everything in life.  I'm thankful that I've come far along in life to realize that no amount of magical decluttering will fix the state of my heart.  However, the state of our home does impact and feed the state of our minds, so I do want to be mindful and care for it in a way that serves God and serves our family.  Also - I don't want to be a slave to stuff, and it can feel that way when stuff skirts the edges of my mind, taunting me for not dealing with it.

So - let the magical tidying begin!  I actually began yesterday.  I sorted all of the short-sleeved shirts that I owned, because I had about 20 extra minutes, so I snuck it in.  It was amazing to me how the "spark joy" filter changed the way that I went through my clothing - something I have done with some regularity.  Maybe you'll join me on this journey?