I had some exciting news over the weekend: an apartment on the top floor of our building is vacant, and we just might be able to move into it! It's a 3 BR (as opposed to our 1 BR where we're sleeping in the living room -- that's really not as bad as it sounds -- and the sofa's in the kitchen), so there'd be a LOT more space (and one more housemate coming to join us... when we figure out who is the best fit). And even though it will entail a bunch of stair-climbing, it's still a really easy move! So keep your fingers crossed.
That brings me to today's resolution: I'm joining the Declutter Challenge inspired by the Single Saver.
My original decluttering goal was too small. I said I'd get rid of 80 things, but in January alone I managed to donate 46. Well, that's a prompt to set higher goals! I'm now committed to removing 366 things from my life/space by then end of 2012.
How do I benefit?
There will be less to clean! (Hooray!)
There will be less to move upstairs if we get this apartment. And even if we don't, we might be able to reduce enough that we can stop paying for a storage unit (if I can find a home for the big things like bookshelves and a dining room table that we want to hang onto for our next apartment or house). Honestly, there are office supplies, tablecloths, and a few other things that I have not used in the last 2 years since they went into packing boxes 3 moves ago. Do I really need them? Once I have less stuff to lug around, I'll be a bit more flexible when it comes to mobility in housing -- just in case!
I might make some money. I don't think I'll ever make it big on eBay. But I have no problem listing odds and ends on Craiglist for those who want to come pick them up. My old dance shoes? Definitely in this category -- they've got plenty of use left in them.
I can help out other people. I know that there are books in my apartment that I won't be keeping. They can go into one of the three lending libraries I have available (well, 2 and a half... still getting around to starting the one at church). I can find a friend or friend of a friend who might need extra kitchen utensils in their next apartment. My sister might want juice glasses when she gets back from overseas. And so forth.
I'll know what I own. That's actually a big one for me. I want everything I own to be useful in some way, and if I can't even say what's in that box I packed up 2 years ago, that's not contributing to my life! If I keep something I'm not using right now (like the dining room table), I want to have made that choice mindfully, after careful consideration of the options.
I'm excited about this challenge! I'll post a few updates as I sort through storage and figure out what all I have. Maybe, like Andrea, I'll have many trash bags full at the end.