All this de-cluttering is proving to be quite fruitful, for the local charity shop anyway. I have started slowly and have set a challenge of at least one item or one group of items everyday. One thing that has surprised me apart from the amount of crap I own is that it doesn’t take much time. Today for example I spent 20 minutes rummaging through drawers and wardrobes. I managed to get a bag of unused clothes together, including 12 ties I never wear. These were happily disposed of in the local supermarket clothing recycling container. I had to go and buy a loaf so as I was passing in they went.
Last night I sat at my laptop with a nice cup of tea and cleared out my email account. Luckily as I have Gmail I can select an email then choose the option to list the sender as spam. I also unsubscribed to the hoards of newsletters I never read. I now anticipate that I will not get any subscribers to this blog as they too will want a clean inbox. There’s a good article over at the techsixty.co.uk website about inbox zero and how to automate your emails to give you more time.
In 1998 using Microsoft Outlook I was able to open an email, collate information from 10 spreadsheets into 1 and forward it to my boss. All without going near a computer, my boss thought I was busy every night sorting all our sales information. If I could do that in 1998 imagine what’s possible now. We have services like IFTTT which is such a useful tool for automating thousands of things. I bet I could spend a week setting up an automated office so that no one would know the difference if the office had any staff or not.
The weather where I am is a bit hit and miss at the moment. We have a few days of sun then it rains. I plan to get outside and declutter my mother’s garden too! We have everything from piles of unused bricks and roof tiles to old garden tools that are way past their sell by date. If rust was a commodity I wouldn’t have to worry about the future. The plan with the garden is to make it as maintenance free as possible so my mother can sit out and enjoy the odd sunny day we have here in the UK.
At the back of the house is a coal shed but it’s not full of coal, old bikes, tools and items that need to be in a scrapyard. The coal house is on my list of things to do next week, when the sun is out.
One thing I have noticed in the short time I have been de-cluttering my life is that things have no value once you own them. I have items I wish to sell however the price that I can sell them for is far below the price which I bought them for. The marketers have done one hell of a job to convince people to buy stuff at inflated prices in the first place. The latest, newest, fastest version is released and the one you own is now obsolete and has almost zero value. I will be setting myself a task of getting as much value back from the items I’m selling as I can. One thought is to offer some items for rent rather than for sale. That way each item can earn its value back before I donate it to a worthy cause.
I am most definitely on step one of this new process to declutter and lead a more meaningful life. I want to focus on so much more but have had my eyes opened to how stuff just gets in the way. I was also thinking about social media and how it is just a pacifier, it’s an electronic dummy to suck on. The one thing that really sunk home was on my birthday not one person on any social media platform wished me well. No one and surely Facebook would have reminded people that I was still alive and had made it once more around the sun. It was a very depressing day. I haven’t really decided on my future with social media but I’m leaning towards just automate it as no one will know if I’m using it or not.