Downsizing After 60: Are You Surrounded by Too Much Stuff and Need to Let it Go?
Is your home filled with mementos and paperwork, or your closets stuffed with clothes? Are you or a person you live with a hoarder?
It’s easy to collect things over the decades, stow them away somewhere and never touch them. But there comes a time when we need to let go and get rid of the extra junk to give us more room and freshen up our living space.
Downsizing After 60: Why Are You Holding on to Something You Never Use?
Are you afraid to part with old, though unused, items? Would you truly miss them if they were gone? Could someone else use and enjoy them? For example, you may have a few old cell phones sitting in your desk drawer. They can be refurbished and given to a victim of domestic violence.
Are You Going to Get Your Broken Gadgets Fixed?
Do you have a box or drawer full of broken gadgets? Do you even know what they’re used for?
Unless you’re incredibly handy at repair work, it’s better to release them to the universe and let someone else deal with fixing them. Junk collectors, thrift stores and flea markets thrive on junk and you may even make a bit of money in return.
Is Your Closet Stuffed with Clothes?
Chances are, you’ll never lose enough weight to fit back in that gorgeous dress you wore in the 80s, but it may be a hit in a costume shop.
A homeless person can always use an outdated warm coat or a comfortable pair of pants. You’ll not only feel good that you made a difference in someone’s life, but you may also be able to take a tax deduction for donating to charity.
Make Extra Cash by Getting Rid of Useless Odds and Ends
Sell unneeded items on eBay, have a garage sale, or set up an estate sale. Put the money you make into your emergency fund or take a weekend trip and have some fun.
Don’t hold onto makeup, skincare, sunscreen, or food products that have expired. The last thing you want is a stomach ache, a painful sunburn or an infection. Once the expiration date has passed, toss it.
Tired of Dusting? Get Rid of Your Tchotchkes
How many candles, statues, awards, mismatched crystal glasses, old books, CDs, cracked teacups, and other odd objects d’art can you chuck to lighten the load on your shelves? Getting rid of clutter can reduce your housework by about 40%.
Update Your Lifestyle and Banish Previous Shopping Mistakes
Are you holding onto items collected from past relationships and want to give your living space a look that reflects your new life and style? Start fresh. Purge the ugly past and create a space that makes you happy and relaxed.
Paperwork Is the Curse of a Cluttered Life
Think of all the trees we destroy to stick piles of documents, receipts, and news clipping in a cardboard box. Why not recycle what you don’t really need so it can be remade into something useful? Sort out duplicates and only keep what is critical.
Are your 40-year-old child’s kindergarten scribbles gathering cockroaches in your closet? Do you have old newspapers piled up in a corner heap that will never get read? Try going paperless as much as possible.
Nowadays, you can pay all your bills online and keep track of them using an online free software program like Mint.com.
Less Is Always More
Add a little Zen to your life and simplify it by cutting out the clutter. It will clear your space and your mind for new ideas and creativity.
Where are you on your personal downsizing journey? What things are you finding it difficult to let go in your life? What habits have you started that help you achieve a simpler lifestyle? What do you think are the benefits of downsizing after 60? Please share all the good things you have discovered! Let’s have a chat!
This article by Rebecca Olkowski was originally published on Sixty and Me.