On Sunday morning, I spent some time going through the contents of my closet and dresser. As I mentioned in my last post, my wardrobe has grown ridiculously over the past year and a half or so, and it seemed like a logical starting point for my life simplification process. After about an hour I had filled two plastic grocery bags to overflowing, and then felt a bit stuck.
My first pass through was easy enough, because all I did was pluck out the things that I don’t like and never wear. For instance, I got rid of a pair of Nike flip-flops that I wore for approximately five days at the beach in Puerto Rico last winter. Not only are they ugly, I hate flip-flops. They are a sensory nightmare for my feet. I hate the way the strap feels between my toes. I hate the way it feels when they slap, slap, slap up and down against my heel when I walk. It makes me shudder just thinking about it. As I tossed them into the donation bag, I vowed to myself that I will never own another pair of flip-flops ever again. Unless of course, I undergo some sort of bizarre personality change where I suddenly love the way flip-flops look and feel. In which case, I reserve the right to change my mind at any time.
The second pass was a bit more time consuming, but still straightforward, with me trying things on and letting go of anything too big, too small, or too awkward looking. This thinned the herd considerably, but still left me with an excessive amount of clothing.
I was feeling sort of disheartened, because I still have way too much stuff to fit it all in my closet, which means I won’t be getting rid of my dresser today. I couldn’t figure out why I was having such a hard time deciding what else I could let go of, because I’m typically not sentimental about material possessions, and I enjoy getting rid of stuff as much as I enjoy shopping. I finally realized it’s because so few of the pieces I own play nicely together, so in order to make a specific shirt work, I have to hold onto a certain pair of pants, and so on. Once I buy a small handful of basics that coordinate, I’ll be able to get rid of a lot more.
Until then, I’ll just celebrate how good it feels to be getting rid of the dead weight of those two bags of clothes. It always amazes me how such a small thing can shift the way an entire room feels. Or maybe it just shifts the way I feel, since all of that stuff was hidden away in the closet, not out in the open where I was looking at it every time I stepped into the room. It feels lighter, less burdened, and I imagine that this feeling will just grow and grow as I get further into these simplification projects and create the environment I want to inhabit in my home.