These Excuses are Keeping You from a Clutter-Free Home

If you’ve ever watched the hit TV show Hoarders, then you’ve probably familiar with some of the most common excuses for holding on to too many things. While the series spotlights some of the most extreme cases of hoarders, their justification for the clutter is very similar to what someone like you and me would say when we’re trying to hold on to something that is no longer useful to us.

It’s time to stop justifying and start decluttering. Below are five common excuses keeping you from a clutter-free home.

“I know this will come in handy one day.”

Admit it. We’ve all said this at least once before. While your intention for keeping the item might be good, that mindset is keeping you from a neat and decluttered home. The truth is, if you haven’t used the item in years, it’s very unlikely you’ll ever need or even miss the item once it’s gone.

“I paid too much money for it.”

It’s common to become attached to the financial investment of an item when it comes time to move on. This is especially true if you grew up in a financially unstable environment. This can sometimes be one of the biggest hurdles to overcome because letting go of the item means letting go of the money you spent on it. If this sounds like you, remember that you’ve already gotten so much value out of the item. Be grateful for what it has done for you and move on.

woman decluttering home and donating items“I have the space and it’s not harming anyone.”

Although this statement may be true, it’s important to think about how physical clutter can oftentimes lead to mental clutter and stress. Ask yourself whether your accumulation of things is driving a wedge between you and your family, or if the mess is causing you stress and impacting your productivity at work. Harm doesn’t always have to be physical to cause pain.

“It was a gift so I can’t get rid of it.”

Items that hold sentimental items are often the last to leave a cluttered space. Gifts, family heirlooms, and one-of-a-kind pieces are some of the most common sentimental items we cling on to. If your collection is comprised of sentimental items, consider narrowing it down to your favorite pieces. If you’re afraid of losing the memories, keep a digital file with pictures of the items you’ll be letting go of. You can visit that file whenever you’re feeling nostalgic.

“It’s in perfect condition and probably worth something.”

Similar to the money excuse mentioned above, this thought often comes up for those of us who might not have grown up with a lot and therefore justify our clutter based on an item’s value. While your items may be worth something, ask yourself if you’ll ever take the initiative of selling the items to make room in your house. If the answer is no, then consider donating your gently used pieces to a nonprofit, thrift store, or any other charity you’re passionate about.