I’m a collector.
I used to collect all kinds of things as a kid. Rocks, stuffed animals, sequined skating dresses and dance costumes, carousel horses, and Barbie dolls with bad homemade haircuts.
As an adult, I collect stuff too. Way too many clearance sale clothes, uncomfortable shoes, more candles than I could ever burn, every card anyone has ever given me, Twitter followers I’ve never met, and a few extra pounds to accentuate my “baby’s got back”. Stuff. Weird stuff.
Surrounding myself with odd bits of clutter overwhelms me, but somehow also provides safety and protection and value. The idea of giving up my stuff makes me feel strangely vulnerable.
Interestingly, I am realizing that I also collect intangible things.
Things like compliments, ideas, memorable moments, encouragement, and aspirations. The things I can surround myself with, like emotional bubble wrap. The things that help me bounce back instead of breaking in the face of challenges. The things that inspire progress and positivity.
But on the flip-side of my emotional bubble wrap, I am a collector of some cruddy stuff too. Insults, criticism, unkind words spoken in anger, judgements, painful past predicaments, missed opportunities, and failures. The stuff that reminds me how truly fragile I am. The stuff that incites doubt and fear and worry. The stuff that no amount of bubble wrap could possibly protect against.
It’s time to take inventory of my collections.
Can you relate to keeping stuff around just for the sake of having it?
Yep. Me too.
What are we afraid of in giving it up or letting it go?
If we strip away the sequin skating dresses and missed opportunities, what will be left?
The good stuff! The real stuff. And the right stuff to surround yourself with.
I realize that I can’t give up years of collectables in just one day. But I can make the decision to be more discerning about the items I am allowing to linger in my home, my heart, and my head.
Wrapping up in the good stuff.
And probably planning a garage sale for all of the old stuff that it is time to let go of.
“Clutter is not just physical stuff. It’s old ideas, toxic relationships and bad habits. Clutter is anything that does not support your better self.”
― Eleanor Brownn
Tagged: personal inventory