It was here that I hit the brick wall so familiar to me whenever it comes to chucking stuff out. I seem to develop weird attachments to the strangest things.
So I made a deal with myself.
Everywhere I 'sorted' I had to chuck away/recycle/donate at least one thing.
Which isn't much, I know - but its a start, and I hope that by doing this, it'll become a bit easier.
The left hand shelf was easy - its where I keep my non-refrigerated/frozen food (a strange arrangement I know, but it works for me!) So I:
- Checked the dates on everything
- Threw out old teabags - I don't actually drink tea...
- Put my lighter to one side to donate
- Stacked everything so I can see what I have
The right hand shelf was more difficult...
- I recycled all the Uni documents that I no longer needed or could find online
- Put a paperweight that I never use in the 'donate' bag - this was difficult as it was a gift
- Sorted my folder of guitar sheet music - I could have scanned these in to save more space, but there's something wonderfully simple about playing music from a piece of paper
- Notebooks! I have so many, about a quarter of this shelf was just notebooks. However, as my education is guaranteed to continue for at least the next 3 years, I decided to keep all of them - as it seems far more wasteful to throw paper away now only to purchase more later on. I have however stored all except one under my bed.
- Cookery books & various 'starting university' guides - my initial reaction was to put them aside for donation, however as my brother is going to uni next year, I've decided to hang on to them until I go home for the summer - and give them to him instead
- National Geographic magazine - I know that I should get rid of the ones I've read. But I really do enjoy reading them again. So I've decided to read them all again, once, and then give them away to friends who would be interested.
- Recycled the glass jar I was using to save pound coins in for the washing machines - I can keep them in my purse/use the change machine at the launderette
In terms of 'clutter' I still have a moneybox and a scent diffuser. But the scent diffuser is kind of necessary when you live with people who have never heard of the concept of washing up! And the moneybox is where I keep all my change when I clear out my purse every week.
So maybe I haven't done the job as a hardcore minimalist would. But its less stuff than I had to start with. So I call that a victory!