I don’t have to hold on to items I used to enjoy.
You used to have big bridge parties and entertain a lot. But now that you are older and you are the one who wants someone else to do all the work. Your energy level is not what it used to be.
You realize that getting rid of that big china cabinet and all that dinnerware and glassware will free up space and make you feel better. But you still hang on to the memories all these things represent. You and your husband never use that big dining room table either.
Maybe it is time to convert that space into something more your style. Perhaps an art studio for a painting hobby you’ve always wanted to have or write room to begin your dream of writing a book.
It is more than okay to retire from doing something you no longer want to do. Maybe you don’t do fancy cooking anymore, and you don’t need all those kitchen gadgets or spices you used to use. Perhaps you used to enjoy quilting, but your eyesight makes it impossible.
Other examples of things you may no longer do:
sewing, knitting, crafts, pottery, stained glass, woodworking, gardening, canning, seasonal decorating, or square dancing.
My adult children need to store their stuff in their own living space.
Your adult children may be using part of your home for storage. You don’t owe them a place for their things. In fact, by keeping the stuff they aren’t using, you may be encouraging a clutter habit that isn’t serving them well.
Your adult children are responsible for their things. If they have too many things, they need to declutter, not store items in your home.
You are not required to keep their stuff in your home even if you have the space to do so. Tell them you have plans for that space, and they need to remove it. Or tell them you are planning on downsizing to a smaller place and need to start getting rid of things.
I don’t owe it to my dead relatives to keep their stuff.
Someone in your life died, and you inherited a lot of their stuff. You don’t owe it to them to keep their stuff. You are not dishonoring them by finding their belongings a new home. They are no longer on the planet, and their stuff doesn’t need to become your stuff. Not unless you can use it and enjoy it. So keep a couple of items and be done with the others.
Getting rid of their items doesn’t mean you are getting rid of the memories attached to them. Their things are not them!
It may be emotionally hard to release these items, but once done, you will feel better eventually. They would want you to free up your space for things you use, not something they used to use.
Keeping your deceased loved ones’ items is not going to make you feel better about losing them. You may want to have a small box of things that help you remember them, like a small locket or old watch, etc. Maybe even some fancy teacups you can use, not just keep in a box and never look at.
Developing new mindsets for a decluttered life may not always be easy, but it will be worth it to free up space for the things you enjoy. By freeing up more of your living space, you will be well on the road to making your 3rd Act your best act.