Let me start off by explaining what I mean by “sentimental clutter”:

Sentimental clutter is those objects you have that are just occupying space, but you’re too attached to them to throw them out. Whether it’s because you have a history with it, like someone special gave it to you, or because it’s an object you’ve had so long that you feel like it would be like throwing out a little piece of yourself.

Do you have something like that in your home? It’s very common to have at least one of those types of items around, though if you’re anything like me, you probably have a “memory box” filled with sentimental clutter.

Of course, that’s not the healthiest thing to do, since the more you accumulate, the harder it gets to throw things out. And then you realize your whole house starts becoming cluttered. This is why we put together these tips on how you can get rid of sentimental clutter guilt-free!

“When we clear the physical clutter from our lives, we literally make way for inspiration and 'good, orderly direction' to enter.” - Julia Cameron

Determine What’s Worth Keeping

Know what you can use and what is worth keeping.
Know what you can use and what is worth keeping. Image source: WikiHow

The right question can go a long way to decide what’s actually worth keeping around and what’s not. Those can be:

  • Why am I keeping this?
  • Why am I sentimental about it?
  • Is this useful in any way?

Important: Don’t let gifts become burdens! Sometimes you may feel obligated to keep something around just because someone gave it to you, but if you don’t really use the gift in question, it’s okay to get rid of it. Best case scenario: pass it along to someone else!

Make Use of Virtual Memory

Virtual memory is easy to keep and to access!
Virtual memory is easy to keep and to access! Image source: Country Living

This tip is mainly for photos or documents - that is, if you don’t have the space for keeping the original ones. They’re easy to convert to digital by scanning them into the computer, and with the cloud technology, there’s no way you’ll ever lose them! In addition to that, you can also use photos to remember objects you need to discard - whether it’s an old kid’s toy or a ruined antique family furniture.

Talk About Clutter with Your Family

Each person is responsible for his or her own room.
Each person is responsible for his or her own room. Image source: Ultimate Homemaking Bundle 2018

Maybe clutter is something that deeply bothers you, but doesn’t really affect anyone else in the house. That can be solved with a family talk to explain how you feel, and also let it clear that each person is responsible for his or her own room and whatever they keep inside, but the common areas of the house should be kept clutter-free.

Donation Is a Path to Follow

Donate everything that's still good to use, but that you don't actually need.
Donate everything that’s still good to use, but that you don’t actually need. Image source: Good Selfish

I guess it’s safe to say one of the best ways to get rid of sentimental clutter is by making a donation. That way you’ll be guilt-free because you know someone, somewhere will be making a good use of whatever object you donated.

Repurpose & Upcycle

Old, worn-out T-shirts with sentimental value can make some awesome pillows.
Old, worn out T-shirts with sentimental value can make awesome pillows. Image source: On Sutton Place

Though if you’re attached to the object in a way you don’t feel like getting rid of it, but also can’t seem to find any ways to make it useful, try repurposing and/or upcycling! There are a lot of projects that can inspire you to make a DIY project at home to repurpose and upcycle, such as:

Writing About It Can Help Out Too

Keeping a journal will help you be clutter-free!
Keeping a journal will help you be clutter-free! Image source: The Allure of Adventure

You can keep a simple journal or even make a scrapbook, that way you’ll be saving a lot of memories at once without the need to keep a thousand objects around. Remember: this is also a nice way to keep some photos, maybe a couple of letters you’ve received over the years, or even smaller items like pressed flowers. Simply glue them on the pages of your notebook and write down your feelings and memories.

Hope this helped you feel better about getting rid of your own sentimental clutter. It can be hard to give that first step, but you’ll sure feel better after the decluttering process! Make sure to give us some feedback on our Facebook page so we can keep on bringing the best content for you!

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