Moving And Letting Go Of The Past

QUESTION

I am moving from a house to a condo and I have so much stuff! Every time I start to pack a box I get overwhelmed, there are so many memories but I just won’t have room for it all in my new place. How do I decide what to get rid of?

ANSWER

VICKI:
Purging is great for the soul. When we release what we no longer need from the past we make room for growth in the present.

Here are a few thoughts on purging:
1. If you haven’t used it or looked at it for a year then you no longer need it.
2. Memories live in you and while keepsakes help us to relive our best times only keep those that remind you of the most precious of people and times that have helped you become who you are today.
3. Never be afraid to let go of something because it is the only piece you have of someone you once were. Who you are now in this moment is the only thing that matters and letting go of who you were only makes room for you to grow further.

I wish you well on your move and your new life.

JILL:
Don’t be too hard on yourself. Moving is overwhelming and one of life’s primary stresses and added to that is the fact that you have to downsize.
Here are steps to make the process easier.

1. Make sure that you have all the supplies needed for an efficient move.
> Boxes, tape, magic markers, strong garbage bags, Rubbermaid containers in a variety of sizes plus some attractive containers with tops for keepsakes.

2. Pack one room at a time. It is best to start with the least used rooms and go from there.

3. In each room sort things and put them into different piles:
> To pack, charity, garbage, put in containers
a. Charity – and let me say that doesn’t mean giving them your junk. Contact the charities in your area and ask them what they really need.
> Old and clean blankets for the SPCA
> Toys, reading material, small appliances to shelters
> Good career clothes – see if there is an organization like Dress for Success in your area
> Other clothes to Goodwill etc…
> Find out who recycles old computers and printers but first be sure to have a professional wipe out the hard drive where your personal information is stored.
b. Decorative items, framed photos etc……..
> Only keep what gives you pleasure when you look at it. What will fit into the new downscaled rooms.
> Give away or throw away Aunt Berta’s pink china elephant that you have always hated.
c. Memorabilia – As Vicki said the memories live inside you. So sort accordingly
1) Check your true feelings behind each article
> Is the memory really a deeply happy one?
> Are you just holding onto to it because you feel that you should?
2) Don’t keep a lot of one type of thing. For instance you don’t need every picture the children drew. Keep a few special ones, even get them framed for your new spare room or home office
3) If you are really unsure about certain things put them in the containers that you bought. Later after you have unpacked the boxes and settled in, re-visit them and see if they fit somewhere or if you are now ready to give them up.