Well I can’t believe it’s the last week of January already. I hope you’ve enjoyed the 31 Days of Simplicity series so far. We’ve talked a lot about adopting new habits to simplify your life (freezer meals, online bill pay, and other routines.) Then we talked about simplicity through uniformity (like matching socks and hangers). Then we spent time looking at shopping habits and how to declutter. We’re gonna wrap up the 31 Days of Simplicity series this week by talking about letting go.
When I was a kid, my family would visit lots of craft fairs. My Mom’s very crafty. Uh, I mean, she’s very creative and likes to make crafts 🙂 So she’d visually dissect everything we liked and then proclaim: “We can make that.” We’d leave the item at the booth, determined that if we really wanted it, we’d make it. The only problem was, we never made them. Ever. On the one hand, we spent less money that way. On the other hand, we never got to enjoy some truly beautiful items.
Over the years, I’ve learned that, while I can indeed make many things, it won’t necessarily save me money. And it always costs time.
Time is money. And often, it’s well worth my time to just buy something. That’s why I buy baby carrots and bagged salads. Yes, I could buy whole carrots and peel them. Yes, it would save money. But what I’d save in dollars would cost me in time and effort.
Here’s my latest struggle. We declutter periodically – OK, as often as we can. Then we’re faced with the decision of what to do with the items we let go of. Do we sell them? Donate them? Just toss it all in the trash?
I’ve tried eBay and craigslist with varying results. It all depends on the items we’re selling. Recently, a new venue popped up that seemed like a great idea. Facebook yard sale groups. I’m part of several local groups and I’ve sold a lot this way. I love them. When they work. Problem is, there are hundreds of people in each group, and your listings get pushed way down almost as soon as you post them. To get your stuff seen, you have to bump the post several times a day. This takes time.
Yes, you make more money this way rather than selling at a yard sale, or taking items to consignment. But you have to weigh whether the increased time and effort is worth it. For some items, probably. Other times, I just want this stuff out of my house and out of my life. I’m tired to thinking about them. Brain clutter is just as stressful as physical clutter.
The Thrifty Girl in me, trained by my mother at craft shows long ago, screams that I need to continue the Facebook yard sale groups until they sell. I paid good money for this stuff, after all. I should get as much money back as possible. (Guilt, guilt.)
But the Simplicity Girl tells me that I just need to let go. Time is money, after all. It’s better to get a little money at consignment and be done with it, rather than waste another day trying to make the most out of stuff I don’t want anyway.
What it really boils down to is letting go of my need for perfection. My need for The Best. Realizing that sometimes “Good Enough” is good enough. Because time is money. And we can’t move forward while we’re clinging to the past.
What’s the best way you’ve found to let go of unwanted items?