Simplicity by Choice

Off-Grid Living & Self-Reliance

A Hoarder’s Nightmare January 17, 2013

I proudly admit it. I am a hoarder’s nightmare. Why do I say this? In our house, we have a strict rule. Unless it is something like a tools or other essential homestead item, if the items go unused or needed for 3 months, they are not necessary to keep. I can just imagine the gasps and panics that a true hoarder would have at the thought of applying that rule in their own homes.

There are many reasons for why we apply this routine in our family. First, it immediately cuts down on the clutter. We only have around the items that are truly necessary. Sure, we have bits of time when clutter happens. It makes me crazy though. I just can’t stand it. I never have a problem with it at someone else’s home, but it makes me edgy in my own home. I simply cannot relax. If I need something, I don’t like having to search for it.

Living our lifestyle of doing things as past generations did, I don’t have time to be constantly having to declutter and clean. I have enough to do each day without causing myself extra work. I have always dreamed of having a simply furnished home like those the pioneers may have had. They didn’t have excess. Sadly, the “entitlement” mentality of today’s generations have brought about the idea of having whatever we want. But is that attitude really a healthy one? Where are we learning self-restraint? Where are we learning to prioritize? What example are we giving our children?

When I have our home as it should be, with all excess removed, it is fast and easy to maintain. I have much more time to spend doing daily chores and doing activities with the children. Stress levels are nearly non-existant.

I have found that the children play with only a very few toys, yet they have many more. The extra toys end up scattered due to lack of space to store them. It makes no sense to hold on to the toys that are not played with. Instead, they could be donated to a shelter or thrift store so that other kids could enjoy them. If the toys are in very good condition, a church nursery may even have use for them.

In the kitchen, it is very easy to let excess get out of hand. I have a weakness in that area. I see a kitchen item at a thrift store or yard sale and am sure that I will use it quite often, only to find that I rarely use it. I tend to gravitate to the same kitchen utensils and cookware every time I prepare a meal. I tested my theory by placing in the pantry the items I rarely use. If I didn’t need those items within 2 months, I knew I wouldn’t miss it.

I read an idea on some blogs of filling 40 bags in 40 days. This idea is to take a bag and going through one closet or room at a time, fill a bag each day. These are to be donated or disposed of. The idea being that at the end of that 40 day time period, your home will be decluttered. It is a workable idea for those who are not sure where to start. For me, I like to simply take one room at a time and do a thorough job of it. It is very similar to spring cleaning. I just prefer to do it more often.

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8 Responses to “A Hoarder’s Nightmare”

  1. aumcchildren Says:

    We recently went through a declutter stage. People now comment on how the house looks picked up all the time. Well it’s because we didnt have a bunch of useless stuff laying around! I still have a lot to do and some of it is lack of storage for what I do need, but I found the house so much easier to clean and it gets done so much quicker!

    • That is great. It does take time to get ti all done, but that is okay. I am working on it as I am able to. I set a personal goal for myself to do a set amount each day. The amount is small enough that it is achievable yet it is still a challenge.

      I am loving how nice it looks to have open space. Next room on my list to complete is the kids’ bedroom. The goal for that room is to have everything organized in a manner that will be easier for the kids to maintain.

      • aumcchildren Says:

        Just make sure to let your child in on that. I actually decluttered both my boy’s rooms and then a week later my oldest was in there moving stuff around! I said what are you doing? He said he didnt like it that way and wanted it HIS way..whatever..lol.

  2. Ann from KY Says:

    I am struggling with this very thing. I had some knee surgeries a few years ago and now feel good enough to do stuff. I just can’t seem to get it done with all that life keeps throwing at me! I agree, once it is picked up and de-cluttered, it is easier to keep it that way with just less work each day. that is my goal.
    I just have a lot of stuff I need to hang on it–jars, canners, tools, etc. I have divided my basement up into areas, so there are a few clean areas down there and that does help. I can actually find some stuff! First floor is still in bad shape.

  3. Autumn Says:

    Awesome issues here. I am very glad to peer your post.
    Thank you a lot and I am taking a look ahead to touch you.
    Will you please drop me a e-mail?

  4. Hello! I just wanted to ask if you ever have any issues with hackers?
    My last blog (wordpress) was hacked and I ended up losing several weeks of hard work due to no back up.
    Do you have any solutions to protect against hackers?

  5. I completely agree! My house is very primitive so it enjoy the simplicity of having little. My kitchen is also a downfall but another area is party supplies and decor. I love hosting events, parties, holidays and special occasions and my stash keeps growing. I think it’s starting to control me and I believe it’s time to start letting it go!


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