Deluttering the green way

I’m super excited to see our friend Small Footprints is back online, cracking the whip on our eco friendly activities.

She’s clearly been looking around my home again because this week’s challenge is all about decluttering!

As you might be aware I’ve been decluttering my home for a good five years or so. Every year I think this will be ‘the one’ but it never is…

Never mind; the hare and the tortoise, right?

Early in the week I took part in the fabulous Simple Living carnival and several of the participants mentioned how having less ‘stuff’ enabled them to lead a more harmonious and simple life.

I absolutely agree and love an ordered space; even though they seem to be short lived here at Chez Green. Mr Green’s answer is that we need more storage <sigh>. My answer is we need to get rid of STUFF. He’s a hoarder and I’m a wannabe minimalist (for stuff you understand, not for floor space and rooms; I’m a space-junkie I confess; not very green, but very honest).

Somewhere in the middle there must be a compromise. Tell me there is!

So the challenge reads “This week choose one area of your home (a closet, drawer, cupboard, etc.) and organize it. Sort through everything and decide which items you’ll use (and put them in their proper places), which items won’t be used and can be donated or given away, and last (as in last resort) … which items should be tossed in the trash bin. If you’re feeling especially ambitious … work your way through the entire home.”

Over the past five years I’ve been working on the downstairs and now it’s time to move up a floor.

I’m going to tackle my study.

It’s a bit of a no-mans land and is a pretty symbolic room to me. You see, it’s MY space. I’m very lucky in that we have a room I can call my own. My vision is for a beautiful space, sans technology that I can be. I want to meditate, read, perhaps draw or do some yoga. Sounds neat doesn’t it? The trouble is I see it as the least important room in the house, so it’s the dumping ground, sometimes I use it as an office (so much for a technology-free room) and now I have a huge desk in there that I have never parked my butt at. The surface is simply gathering dust and I feel unhappy when I look through the door into the room. The walls are burgeoning with books that I don’t have time to read and if I did I wouldn’t be able to find.

I have a fitness goal for the year so now I’m wondering if, instead of it being a ‘being’ space it should be a mini gym. That way I’d be sure to use the equipment (or would I?). Well it would certainly put out of reach a huge procrastination issue and might just get me closer to my vision. That would be a GOOD use of space – there I go again, judging a ‘being’ space as not worthy…

I think for now I’m simply going to clear the space and see what it becomes.

You wanna see it? My lovely space I can call my own?

I wonder what a psychologist would make of it. They’d probably agree I like to sabbotage and crap on myself a lot 😉

These photos actually make me cringe and it’s not because the flash hasn’t gone off. In all honesty I feel ashamed, grotesque, a sense of complete gluttony when I look at what I’ve accumulated in my life. There are people with nothing and I am not loving all of this. It’s time to find loving homes for the things I no longer want so that I can love my home more:



  1. Small Footprints on January 16, 2013 at 9:19 pm

    Isn’t it interesting how we put a space for ourselves at the bottom of the list. I’ve done the same thing … I’ve ALWAYS wanted a room for me … a place where I could be creative or read or be alone … or put out a puzzle without having to move it at meal time. 🙂 Ah well …

  2. Mairi Stones on January 17, 2013 at 11:01 am

    You’re only putting into words what I think and feel so no shame there, courage I’d say. I too am on a de-clutter programme. Going away and having to pack up the house helped me rid myself of a lot but still there’s more. I’m trying on item a day at the moment and not even managing that, but it does mean that in a week a few items make it out.
    I always have what we call the “charity shop” box under the stairs and it gradually gets filled up and then taken, or things are offered to friends and relatives if we think they might use them. X

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  4. Tammy Curry on January 17, 2013 at 2:18 pm

    We have a tendency in this house to say, hhmmm, how can I use that for another purpose? Then it goes into a box, semi-forgotten. We are getting better about it but still need to do more. Like Mairi when we moved this past summer it helped us to really evaluate what we needed.

    I do like the idea of the charity shop box, I do that with clothes. Which reminds me, it is time to thin the kids’ clothing collection out again.