I recently moved to a new place, and most of my things came with me. The moving process gave me a much-needed opportunity to survey the things I own and decide if I wanted to keep them and bring them to the new place, or find a new home for them (which, yeah, includes the trash can in a few instances).
It was tough to decide what would stay and what would go, but one question helped me along the way.
If I was shopping right now, would I buy this?
Imagine you're in a store, holding the object in your hand. Would you pay to bring it home? If so, then it's an easy addition to the "keep" pile. If not, you have a little more fuel to help you decide it needs to find its way out of your home.
It applies to dishes, table linens, small appliances, and even things outside of the kitchen (like clothes, decorations, tech gadgets, and tools). And this one question causes you to weigh in on a few other considerations at the same time.
- If it doesn't fit, you wouldn't buy it. Just like you wouldn't buy a pair of jeans that don't fit, you probably don't need to keep plates that don't fit in your cabinet — unless you can find a place where they will fit.
- If it is outdated, you wouldn't buy it. Got some linens that seem way too 1940s for your taste? Don't keep them.
- If it doesn't work, you wouldn't buy it. That toaster you've meaning to get fixed for months? Yeah, you're probably never going to fix it.
By removing your ownership with this little mental exercise, it's easier to see what value (if any) there actually is in the things you own. And with every instance of asking yourself "Would I buy this?" you're closer and closer to a decluttered home, mind ,and life.
More on Decluttering Your Kitchen
This post originally ran on Apartment Therapy. See it there: Declutter (In a Big Way!) by Asking Yourself One Simple Question