In our business, the most commonly asked question is “Where do I Start”? The simple answer is to select a room, then sort, de-clutter and organize the contents.
Most seniors have been in their homes for 30-40 years. The thought of sorting treasures located not only throughout the house, but in the basement, attic and garage becomes overwhelming. In fact, it is so threatening that it causes many seniors to freeze and delay moving to a retirement community that is filled with new adventure.
Mary Kay Bochenek of The Moorings in Chicago said, “It is like losing weight or exercising. They say they will work on it later and it becomes their excuse for not moving forward. It takes energy to move and make decisions. It is easier to do nothing.”
Individual energy and assistance (family or professional) is needed to complete a move efficiently and quickly. As long as the senior and their family are in control, the situation is much less stressful. However, many times people delay the decision, a crisis arrives and the decision to downsize is made for them.
As a family looks to downsize or de-clutter while remaining in control, they should focus on the specific items they wish to surround themselves in their home and NOT the items they are leaving behind. Everyone of us has “treasures” in our home that have wonderful memories, but we all face the same reality that we cannot retain it all as we move forward with our new adventure. A quick photograph of an item that has been targeted for sale is always a solution that maintains its nostalgia. Use the “10 questions to help you de-clutter” as a guide on what to save or what needs to go.
10 QUESTIONS TO HELP YOU DE-CLUTTER
1.) Is this item something I use regularly?
2.) If not, is it something I love?
3.) Am I keeping this out of obligation or expectation?
4.) Am I holding on to this because I think I should love it?
5.) Am I saving this just in case?
6.) Do I have multiples of the same thing?
7.) Could something else I own do the same job?
8.) Am I holding on to a broken item to fix one day?
9.) Is this item worth the time I spend cleaning/storing it?
10.) Could I use this space for something else?
No time like the present, so get started now and if you face overwhelming challenges, we can help. At Smooth Transitions, we are sensitive to the importance of lifelong possessions, while also being objective with the realization that “stuff needs to go”. We can help as little or as much as needed.