Professional decluttering and home organising isn’t, contrary to some beliefs, about a stranger coming into your home and throwing out all the things you love! It IS about working with you to understand how you live and what your values are. Then I can encourage and support you to mindfully consider what items are important to you, and we can respond to those items accordingly. If you don’t love or use the item, let it go. But if you do love it, honour it.
Many decluttering clients say to me they can’t part with something because it belonged to a family member who has died, or it was given to them by an old friend. It has “sentimental value” for them. And yet it’s stuck outside in the garage, unused and unappreciated; face-down in the dust between a bag of potting mix and a rotting pile of footy socks. If this item IS important to you, then celebrate it. Use it. Honour it.
By decluttering, you can breathe life back into unused treasures. If your mother left you her fine bone china tea set, use it. Set aside ten minutes every evening after dinner for a tea ceremony. Make a proper pot of tea, pour it into your mother’s beautiful and delicate cup and saucer, and put your feet up as you sip your tea and honour the memory of your mother in a stylish and beautiful way.
A friend of mine had a lovely idea. Her father was known for his stylish dress sense and flamboyant ties. After he died, she asked her family if she could have all his ties. She plans to create a box-framed artwork using the brightly coloured and textured ties. Every time her eyes glance up to this distinctive and highly personal creation, she’ll smile and remember her dad with affection.
When my beloved grandmother died, I inherited her crystal trifle bowls and silver serving spoons. My childhood memories of Christmas always included the excitement of a bowl full of Ollie’s trifle, with candlelight gleaming off the cut crystal and the bowls’ polished silver rims. So every Christmas now my family and I have a ritual to honour my grandmother. First, we very carefully hang her oh-so-fragile antique glass baubles high on the Christmas tree. Then, I pour myself a glass of sherry—her tipple of choice—and sit down with my white gloves on to clean my grandmother’s silver. It never fails to make me cry, but they’re happy tears, and they’re all about honouring a special woman and her special possessions.