I have a problem with getting rid of possessions.

It’s on the mild side, not anywhere near where I could be on “Hoarding: Buried Alive” on TLC and not nearly to the point where I’m embarrassed to have someone visit my apartment.

I’ve been thinking about the topic because I’m writing an article about how to declutter for an upcoming magazine the NewsTribune produces: “Home, Garden & Life.”

I recently interviewed a woman named Tina Curtis who owns a local organizing business. She told me that clutter is chaos and chaos causes anxiety.

I started to think about the items in my life I don’t use and aren’t sentimental — yet I still don’t want to get rid of.

This weekend, I donated about 15-20 pairs of shoes I hadn’t worn in about six years, and I donated about 15 books I had acquired while in college.

It felt good to get rid of those possessions, and I want to get rid of more junk, like clothes I don’t wear.

But I don’t really want to get rid of clothes or more shoes or books, because what if?

I mean, who doesn’t need at least three pairs of shoes for working outside?

I thought about how my whole life is full of clutter, full of chaos.

I recently cleaned out my purse, and I found about 10 crinkled receipts, tons of notes, two birthday cards, bobby pins, 10 pens, a bottle of Ibuprofen and earrings.

My dresser is full of more than 15 beauty products I use once a year.

My desk at work has tons of paper on my desk that I don’t want to part with.

I have hundreds of photos, videos, word documents and emails on my phone and my computer that I don’t want to get rid of — such as a video from the internet of a pig that puts together a puzzle.

I don’t have a sentimental attachment to most of these items, but I don’t have a deep desire to get rid of them either. I think the main reason is that I paid for the items, and I don’t want to get rid of something that I might (stress the word “might) need soon.

My boyfriend reminded me of my mom’s ice maker she let me bring to our apartment. I used the machine a total of two times at the apartment — I’ve had it over a year.

I want to purge these items from my life, but it could be worse, at least I don’t need a self storage unit.

A local 5’ x 10’ storage unit costs around $50 a month or $600 a year. I can’t think of a way I’d rather spend my money more than to store items I don’t see or use.

Do you find yourself in this dilemma too? Maybe you have suggestions you could send to me. I’d appreciate a little less chaos in my life.

Ali Braboy can be reached at (815) 220-6931 and countyreporter@newstrib.com. Follow her on Twitter @NT_PutnamCo.


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