This is part 5 in a six part series on decluttering
Komono! When I first read about this category, I thought it was crazy. I had just gotten used to being told do this stuff, then go to this one next. Now I had to figure out what to do next on my own? What kind of a method was this?
When I got there, though, I understood. Komono is as it is for two reasons. 1) Not everyone has the same miscellaneous stuff. 2) By this time we understand how to put things into categories, so now it’s time for us to start to go it alone.
For me, some parts of Komono were challenging, others felt pretty straight forward. I decided to tackle the categories that felt easier to me, but would also give me good bang for the buck. Then I faced the tougher categories later. My Komono list went like this:
Kitchen bakeware and cooking
Kitchen dishware and utensils
Bathroom Personal Care
Bathroom Linens and Towels
Pet Food Bowls and Leashes
Cleaning supplies and laundry stuff.
Indoor household repair items
Small Misc Items
Home repair projects
Drawing Supplies and paint
I know it might seem like I was breaking the rule about going by space, but I stayed faithful to each category I created, even though they might have been in the same room. By getting the Kitchen done in the first three groups, I made a huge dent in the clutter. The bathrooms categories went so well we ended up with a huge empty closet in our master bath, along with three empty drawers. In the kitchen, I cleared out two additional kitchen cabinets.
Office supplies drove me nuts. Along with things like pens, paper, envelopes, stamps sticky notes, I just had a lot of junk items. Stickers, old binders from my last job, one use things like cheap markers that were partially used up, paper clips, rubber band, all kind of weird tape, all of which seemed like it might have some use some day. I had gotten a lot of things from my sister’s estate as well. It was junk that was borderline sentimental. I could feel myself stalling out.
I went back to my vision about what I wanted in my life. Then I made the mistake of talking to my hubs. He absolutely loves anything in the way of office supplies, so he was all for me keeping it all. I felt myself waiver a bit. Well, actually I waivered a lot. Greg is probably the one person who can have me question my own judgement. It’s not malicious, it’s just that I really respect his opinion and he knows me so well. But in this particular instance, his advice was really because he just loved office supplies.
I tuned it out and took a break. Anytime I felt stuck, I would take a break and reassess. It just seemed to make sense. Usually after a day or two, my focus would get clear again and I could move on.
Most of the office stuff ended up going. And the things I did keep, I eventually cleared out later in the year, because I never did use them.
Crafts and hobby items was another sticking area.
I do love to make things and be creative. But I had projects from years ago that I had never touched. My mom left me with some of her projects and it took some time to let those go. Once I realized I had no passion for them and it was her original project, I was able to send it away.
As I’ve mentioned in other posts, my biggest challenge with projects had to do with why I bought them in the first place. I would see someone’s beautiful handiwork and think to myself, “Gosh that’s lovely, I could do that!” Then I would buy the supplies and let them sit. 6 month later they would still be sitting there and I would be feeling guilty for spending the money for something I didn’t love.
My new strategy is to take the time to really admire an artist work when I see it; especially if I’m feeling that “tug.” I tell myself they did a wonderful job. I keep at it until the desire to recreate it is past. 90% of the time, it’s worked for me.
The miscellaneous crafts got to me as well. There were so many bits and pieces of things that I had purchased because I might use them some day. After years of having this stuff, some day never came. I ended up putting the odd bits into baggies and donating them.
Going through everything the way I did really paid off. By the time I was through with Komono, and this category took me a couple of months, I had made at least 10 trips to the donating center and had a yard sale, and a “free sale.”
I staged all of my sentimental items in my office to do when I was ready. I took a well deserved break after Komono was done. I needed time to gear myself up mentally to do that last category. I had so many memories to tackle, and I wasn’t sure how I would handle it, truthfully. I needed time to plan and prepare.
I’ll post the last part of the series on the emotions of sentimentals on Monday. I’ve also decided to add a bonus post on Tuesday, to summarize the series. Thanks for reading!
One thought on “The Emotions of Stuff: Komono, The Miscellaneous Category.”
“Gosh that’s lovely, I could do that!” — I cannot count the number of times I have thought this exact same thing. I think this sentence is almost wholly responsible for the cluttered mess I started out in!