Megan P. dropped me a line over the weekend to follow-up on our discussion of Stuff, writing:
Raised by a packrat, Stuff drove me crazy. Until a few years ago, this was the solution: keep a bag of “de-accumulation” and fill it as full as possible every week. Give it to charity once a month. All four bags.
It quit working for me when I began watching TV and reading fashion and home decor magazines. During that time, I not only accumulated stuff, but even managed to fill a storage unit. Since realizing this a few months ago, I have been systematically weeding things out and getting them out of my life.
Setting things aside to resell by consignment, garage sale, or eBay has not been successful for me. I was royally ripped off at the beginning of the yard sale by an organized group of people. I am often out of season or they have too many of that item or book at a consignment shop, and eBay does not work for me. I would rather give it to a charity and hope it gets into the right hands than keep shoveling the Stuff.
One last tip: it was only when I quit watching TV for many years that I was able to shake the desire to accumulate stuff. It is insidious. When I watched TV and repeatedly saw ads for useless things in magazines, I became a True American Consumer.
If you struggle with too much Stuff, a de-accumulation bag might help you purge some of that clutter.
Finally, please note that as I talk about materialism and Stuff, I’m doing so in the context of my own life. I feel surrounded by too much crap right now, and I’m wanting to change that. I’m not making judgments about how much other people have accumulated or what they choose to keep.
As always, you should do what works for you.