Downsizing – Why Is Parting With Stuff So Hard?
You’ve lived at your home for several years or many, and over that time, you’ve accumulated a lot of stuff. Kinda like me. Some of it you have an emotional connection to, and some of if you just don’t. Yet even the stuff that has no utility or emotional attachment seems tough to part with. So let’s answer the question – “Downsizing Why Is Parting with Stuff So Hard?”.
Hi, I’m Paula Quinn of RE/MAX Central, and I’m a certified Seniors Real Estate Specialist, and I focus on helping baby boomers and above, downsize out of their current home and rightsize into their new home.
If you’re struggling to clear thing out, you are not alone. One theory in regards to the psychology of letting go is called the endowment effect. Which means, basically, that once we claim ownership of an object, it becomes ours and is much harder to let go of. And it’s not just with a large object or possessions that add value like cars or homes, this can take place with small items with no emotional or dollar value. Research has shown that we may place value on things like this because they become an extension of ourselves, or if they were given as a gift, an extension of the person who gave it. Letting go of the item can feel like an abandonment of sorts.
However, what might be more appropriate is consider the value of the memory it created and not the physical item itself. When you decide to tackle and downsize that overfilling closet, or that bedroom that is now the junk room, or in my case, the catch-all, or cubby. Start by sorting it in two categories. Stays or goes. There doesn’t have to a maybe pile. One of the best tests I use is, when I look at an object and hold it, I ask myself, “Does this object give me joy?”, “Or have I seen it recently?” And if it does give me joy, it stays. If it doesn’t, it goes.
The second big challenge of downsizing is what to do with all the stuff in the goes pile. Fortunately there are several great options in Central Minnesota for donating everything from furniture to knickknacks. Get in contact with me, I’ll be happy to give you a list of places to donate. Some will even pick up. Aside from donating to local charities, you could certainly sell your items. I don’t always recommend Craigslist, just because of safety concerns, but there are other online avenues that are more neighborhood focused with people you know. Such as your local Facebook buy-and-sell groups.
For items that are more of a collector’s item or that have more value, there are companies that specialize in selling just these things for you.
Think of me as a resource. I’m here to help in any way I can. Creating a tradition of trust, your realtor for life. Paula Quinn with RE/MAX Central. When you do what you love, people love what you do.
Paula Quinn RE/MAX Central