Author Topic: Too much stuff!  (Read 4589 times)

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Offline Kate

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Too much stuff!
« on: February 02, 2014, 05:50:55 PM »
This is probably a weird post, but have been home from work for a few days and decided to organize my shoes as they are always such a cluttered mess. 

Well, discovered that I have waaay too many shoes, and that I have several sets of multiple pairs of nearly identical shoes, most of which are unworn. 

Not only that, but my  closet is also overflowing with clothes I either can't get into, or rarely wear.

Now, I'm guessing that this is a symptom of trying to fill up the gaping hole in my life that the loss of my son and granddaughter has left, but it can't go on! 

Has anyone else faced this addiction?   i know that acknowledging the problem is a start, but how did you move forward in organizing and stopping the urge to buy things you don't need?

Offline luise.volta

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Re: Too much stuff!
« Reply #1 on: February 02, 2014, 07:38:45 PM »
My solution was to eat. I'm 87 and it took me my entire life to get to where I no longer seek comfort externally. There are myriad ways to move honestly into finding it within...and I think at one time or another, I have tried them all. I don't think there is so much an 'answer' as there a 'place' where we can let go, finally. We define it differently. I feel that i have somehow found my 'heart' and that life isn't about situations, reactions, opinions or even experiences. It just is. Very hard to articulate...but I just wanted to commend you for taking that step...seeing what isn't working...and being open to moving on. Hugs...
"Courage doesn't always roar. Sometimes it's a quiet voice at the end of the day saying, I'll try again tomorrow." -- Mary Ann Radmacher

Offline Kate

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Re: Too much stuff!
« Reply #2 on: February 02, 2014, 09:38:41 PM »
Thank you Louise.  I  have made such efforts to find inner peace and it is quite confronting to see so clearly the evidence of how much turmoil I am still experiencing.  On the surface I feel pretty good most of the time. I try to channel those mothers whose children emigrated and who lived their lives assuming that they were OK.  I am generally happy, but that sneaky maternal instinct is very persistent.

I shall have to keep working at it.  And maybe not buy that fabulous bargain watch that is 85% off retail price.

Offline Cranky Pants

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Re: Too much stuff!
« Reply #3 on: February 02, 2014, 09:52:24 PM »
Kate, I've faced the "retail therapy" issues for many years.

My solution is to stay out of the retail stores, but go to the 2nd hand stores where the splurges are about $4.00 and if I buy 4 or 5 items, that's still a whole lot less than had I bought those items in a department store.

What about finding a child or children somewhere that you could buy shoes for?  What about starting a shoe recycling depot where everyone could bring their shoes and others could come and find some?  I think there is a charity that has already started this but there are always people in every neighbourhood who are in need.

Good luck,
CP

Offline Kate

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Re: Too much stuff!
« Reply #4 on: February 02, 2014, 10:42:08 PM »
Hi CP, those are great suggestions.  I particularly like the idea of shoes for kids.

Department stores are a big contributor to my shoe problem, and I do try to avoid them, but directly below my workplace is a discount shoe store!  Directly opposite is a charity shop which I visit regularly.  I have to walk past both of them in order to take my lunch time walk. I think I will have to try to stick to a 'one in, one out' policy, or more realistically,  a 'one in, three out' policy for a while.

Maybe I can buy school shoes and donate them to the charity shop - so long as they go to those who need them rather than those like me who just drop in looking for a bargain.

Offline Cranky Pants

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Re: Too much stuff!
« Reply #5 on: February 02, 2014, 10:53:24 PM »
Kate, what about contacting the school to buy those shoes? the teachers will know who needs them the most.


Offline Pooh

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Re: Too much stuff!
« Reply #6 on: February 03, 2014, 01:26:23 PM »
Kate, I can relate, but mine doesn't have anything to do with my DS issues.  I have always done this!  I am one of these people that have 5 different sizes in my closet in case I lose weight, or in case I gain weight.....yeah.

I am not too bad about shoes, but pocketbooks, I realized I had a weird obsession with those years ago.  I was going through them and realized like you, I had like 15 black pocketbooks, just very little difference.  Same thing with other colors.  I finally just had to make myself go through them and de-clutter.  And I have purged many of my clothes at this point realizing I was NEVER going to be a size 8 or 6 again.

My new thing now is paper.  I keep everything.  Old cards, old graduation stuff, notes....anything on paper, I can't bring myself to throw away.  I'm trying now to wrap my brain around going through it.
We must let go of the life we have planned, so as to accept the one that is waiting for us. -
Joseph Campbell

Offline Stilllearning

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Re: Too much stuff!
« Reply #7 on: February 03, 2014, 02:03:20 PM »
Yes, I keep too much stuff too!  Not shoes, but everything else you can think of and my DH tends to be the same!  When we throw things out we need them a few days later.  Sometimes I watch "Hoarders" just to make myself feel better.  See!  I am not that bad!!!  LOL

I have a friend who throws everything that is not seasonal out if she does not use it at least once a month!  I once told her that somewhere between me and her there was a perfect compromise.........   I haven't found it but neither has she.  Her DH complains about buying things over and over.....
Your mind is a garden your thoughts are the seeds
You can grow flowers or you can grow weeds.
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Offline luise.volta

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Re: Too much stuff!
« Reply #8 on: February 03, 2014, 02:18:30 PM »
Well, here's a solution. I live in a 440 sq. ft studio. I have one, 6 ft. closet. Like Pooh, I used to have what Val called my 'accordion wardrobe'...size 6 to size 20! Here, I have a hanger in every slot and when I hang up something new, I have to head over to our campus Thrift Store with something outdated. I am very different about coats, shoes...and purses. I buy one pair of shoes, a coat and a purse and use them until they need to be replaced. Besides my New Balance Walkers, I have one pair of flats in case I get dressed up (that's anything that isn't jeans! LOL!)
"Courage doesn't always roar. Sometimes it's a quiet voice at the end of the day saying, I'll try again tomorrow." -- Mary Ann Radmacher

Offline Kate

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Re: Too much stuff!
« Reply #9 on: February 03, 2014, 02:55:24 PM »
Louise, your discipline is amazing.

I wonder if part of my problem is that having been very cash strapped most of my life and now having a bit more leeway in my finances I find it very hard to resist a bargain,  and even harder to part with something that I just know I will use some day. I know that it is silly and wasteful to buy all this stuff.

Handbags, how many handbags can one seriously use?  I have about a dozen all bought for a song and all good quality,  but a dozen! and yarn, boxes of it. I have so much yarn that i had to buy an antique bed (they are higher than modern beds) for the spare room to put the boxes under. I am making a concerted effort to use it up, but it is a huge effort not to go to the yarn store for more.  Our little house is fit to burst with all this stuff. 

Occasionally my obsession is useful in that I bought a bargain priced ($60!) designer silk dress and was able to give it to a friend for her sons wedding.  She looked fabulous in it.

Offline luise.volta

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Re: Too much stuff!
« Reply #10 on: February 03, 2014, 03:49:59 PM »
Hey, that's the up side, K.! :D
"Courage doesn't always roar. Sometimes it's a quiet voice at the end of the day saying, I'll try again tomorrow." -- Mary Ann Radmacher

Offline Pen

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Re: Too much stuff!
« Reply #11 on: February 03, 2014, 05:57:08 PM »
My old ways of filling the void included eating, binge-reading and shopping at yard sales. Reading the previous posts, I was practically breaking my arm patting myself on the back for having overcome those vices - until I realized I'm still trying to fill the void but now with time-wasting activities like watching too much TV or getting sidetracked by social media and other unnecessary stuff.

What amazing things could we be doing instead? Maybe 2014 is our year to let go of some of these things that are holding us back!
Respect ... is appreciation of the separateness of the other person, of the ways in which he or she is unique.
-- Annie Gottlieb

Offline Stilllearning

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Re: Too much stuff!
« Reply #12 on: February 03, 2014, 06:27:14 PM »
 ???  Pen....does this mean you are thinking of reducing your time spent regulating this site??  Horrors!!  Thanks for your time :)
Your mind is a garden your thoughts are the seeds
You can grow flowers or you can grow weeds.
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Offline Cranky Pants

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Re: Too much stuff!
« Reply #13 on: February 03, 2014, 07:03:49 PM »
I recently started following this blog http://www.theminimalists.com/.

It's motivating me to think about what items I could donate to give me more space but also to make my life about "more fun, less stuff".  I agree that shopping and so many of those other behaviours could be about filling the void (whatever void), but as someone who grew up very poor and with crummy stuff, it's been a life long goal to have nice stuff.  I reached my goal, but now I'm thinking that as I get older, I should pare down the nice stuff, and keep only the items that I use and the ones that I dearly love.

My lifestyle has changed dramatically, haven't had a dinner party or any type of social gathering in almost a decade.  All those dishes that gather dust and haven't been used for years, could probably find themselves a new home and actually get some use. 

I've done this once or twice before and then regretted giving away some items, I tended to get enthusiastic in the removing and then regretful later on so I think it's best to do it in steps.  They say if you haven't worn an item in a year, you should donate it, etc. 

CP






Offline Stilllearning

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Re: Too much stuff!
« Reply #14 on: February 03, 2014, 07:46:29 PM »
My DH and I have toyed with the idea of giving all the antique furniture we inherited to our son now......if only we trusted our DIL.  I think she might sell it them and they have been in the family for three (going on four?) generations.  Darn it!!
Your mind is a garden your thoughts are the seeds
You can grow flowers or you can grow weeds.
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