My amateur effort at housecleaning last weekend got me thinking about possessions, specifically, the lack of them. Concrete reasoning suggested to me the fewer objects I have the less I have to clean. Like the changing tide, my inner-Martha is on the wane and my inner-Angela ascends. It is high-time to throw things out.
I was recently reminded the average household has tens of thousands (!) of items under its roof, most of them doing no good. The speaker on the subject suggested a discarding one thing per day for a month. This will hardly put a dint in the amount of debris but it will give you a good feeling for having thrown out some rubbish. This virtuous habit could continue until the house is resembles a Martha Stewart photo:
My training in the treatment of OCD says the enemy to purging one’s provenance is the pernicious philosophy “Just in Case”. You look at the box brimming with old cassette tapes, cords to who-knows-what, and clothes unworn in since the 80s, and you conclude to keep all of it – ‘just in case’ – someday you may want them. The chances of this, of course, are nil. OCD patients are taught the “30 rule”: if you can replace a potential tosser with a new one purchased for $30 dollars OR you can drive less than 30 minutes to a store to get a replacement than the said item is toast.
Much of OCD hoarding focuses on throwing out unneeded things but not much is said about the new things flowing into the house. One must be always on guard for nefarious items creeping slowly in and accumulating until you are drowning in unnecessary plastic objects and refrigerator magnets.
In the House of Spo (and Someone too) there is no lack of unused items; we could fill the Goodwill bins with our discards.
I am going to take up the thirty day once a day throw-out challenge – if I can for Someone is a bit of a Just-in-Case type of guy. It would be just my dumb luck to discard the moss-covered three-handled family gredunza only to have Someone suddenly want it and ask its location. I think I will start in the garage with the snow shovel or the inutile walk-man. Even my inner-Martha won’t object.