If any of you have ever watched an organizing show or read a book on organization, the purge is one of the most heart wrenching things to do. Why is this? Why is a broken old vacuum cleaner so impossible to part with? Well, here is the main reason: We are emotionally attached to our things. How can we possibly give them up when they have served us so well? This is their house; they have lived in it all their lives. Can we just kick them out? That would be heartless, wouldn’t it? They hold so many fond memories - would they take them with them?

Please listen carefully (or read carefully I should say), YOU ARE NOT YOUR POSSESSIONS! They should not own you and your space! I am telling you now - TAKE BACK THAT CONTROL. Don’t let them bully you any more! Your house is your house; you’re paying the mortgage or rent, not ‘them’. They are taking up valuable real estate and cluttering up your life. The only things that should live in your space are things you need, use or love, and yourself and your family.

When you are ready to take back the control of your space, these are the questions you need to ask yourself about the things that are currently residing with you:

Do I need this? Be honest with yourself and do not answer that you might, maybe, someday need this. Do you need this now? Does this need to take up space in your house? Is it serving a purpose? I’m referring to things like irons for example. I do not love my iron and I don’t really use it too often, but I need to have one in the house for those special occasions when I need clothes to be wrinkle-free.

Do I use this? Again, honesty is the best policy. If you have things that you used to use but that are no longer serving you, then they can go. Those hot rollers that have sat in your linen closet for the past 5 years because you have short hair now and have no immediate plans to grow it long again, can probably go to someone who can use them. You can splurge on yourself for new ones if you ever do grow your hair long again. A good policy for most things is if you have not used it in a year then it can go, but you can decide for yourself what a comfortable time line is. The maximum time limit you should keep anything is no more than 2 years.

Do I love this? Here is the toughest question to decide on. We all love our ‘stuff’ because of the memories associated with that ‘stuff’. But keep in mind that you do not have to keep all your ‘stuff’ to keep the memories. There are ways to keep those memories alive without actually keeping the item. Pictures are a great way to keep things alive, and a picture of your favorite couch takes up much less space than the actual old, worn out couch sitting in your family room.

Anything that has bad memories associated with it should be let go. This will allow room for new and better things to come instead of holding on to the past. Surround yourself with things you truly love - things that make you feel good when you see them or use them.

Letting go of your ‘stuff’ is the hardest part of any organizing project. Allow yourself to mourn the loss of your ‘stuff’ but keep in mind the ultimate goal is that of regaining control your space. The freedom you will experience through this process will be life changing. I guarantee it!

Author's Bio: 

As the Co-owner of OrganizingConnection.com, Kimberly is the producer of Step by Step organizing videos designed to teach people how to take control of their space and time. Videos Produced by her include ‘Organizing Your Kitchen’, ‘Organizing Your Mudroom/Entrance’, ‘Organizing Your Master Bedroom’ and ‘Organizing Your Personal Papers’ all videos can be purchased at www.OrganizingConnection.com

Kimberly Eagles is a Professional Organizer with a CD Specialist Certificate from the National Study Group on Chronic Disorganization. As an active member of Professional Organizers in Canada, Kimberly is a part of the industry’s leading resources for professional organizing.