Slump Before Push for Week 50 (Decluttering and Simplifying 2010)

I’d like to think this week is the slump before the big push that will finish my yearlong decluttering and simplifying project with a bang.

I spent all of my extra time this week writing for low pay for clients that aren’t exactly what I’m looking for, but it’s early days yet in this relaunch of my writing career. I’m learning to write faster, too. For some of the work I’ve been doing recently, speed is more critical than content, so I’m adjusting my usually perfectionist personality to fit this new mold. As my bookselling business continues to survive in its smaller and leaner state, writing clients of some kind are crucial pieces in the puzzle of my new life.

I managed to get a few papers that had accumulated since the first big push of decluttering out of the house this week. The goal, as you know, is to get rid of as much stuff as possible before we cancel our trash service in a few weeks. I’m still analyzing every item I throw away to consider why I have it in our house and how difficult it would be to recycle or take from the house another way.

In addition to the few papers that are generated in my writing and bookselling businesses, most of our very modest amount of trash is either food waste (either trimmings or leftovers that eventually get thrown away), food packaging that results from using more convenience products than we should and the results of cleaning out the cats’ litter boxes. Still, on weeks when we haven’t been decluttering, it’s only about two tall kitchen garbage bags of trash. That’s more than we’d like but not enough to really justify trash service coming to our home.

I still haven’t figured out how we will deal with yard debris and other big and unwieldy items once we cancel the trash service. In our case, yard debris is mostly either trash from neighboring yards or pots and other items from our yard that go bad and need replacing. It isn’t much, but it has to be dealt with.

If it sounds like this project has stalled a bit, it has. I still seem to be surrounded by things, but everything that remains is much harder to sort and eliminate than the obvious trash and obvious clutter that I eliminated earlier in this adventure. Still, small things get done every week, and each week I benefit from the progress I’ve made in previous weeks.

In other words, my 52 weeks are almost up, but as I’ve been saying, this project will continue for a long time.


  1. You could look at it this way – if one bag of stuff comes into your life each week (groceries, etc.), as long as you get rid of *more than* one bag of stuff that week, you’re making progress. 🙂

    I remember several years back when I lived in a place that was unbelievably cluttered. We had one of those large (96 gallon I think?) garbage cans from our garbage service, and my goal each week was to fill the trash can. Since all I brought in (for the most part) was groceries, I knew that by filling the can I was making progress overall.

    Just a thought. Keep on keepin’ on!

    1. Taking more out than I bring in makes sense to me, Robert. I have one of those 96 gallon polycarts and I plan to fill it a couple more times before I get rid of it!

      Thanks for commenting, as always. Comments have been a bit slow around here recently.


  2. I love your decluttering link! I wish that I had found it sooner. We have got rid of a lot of clothes, household items,books and a lot of other things. We have a thrift store called the Hope Center that we donate our
    things to here in our town. Yard sales are not very good around here.
    I am really getting into clearing my house out and it
    really reduces stress to get rid of stuff. I used to buy two of everything but I have stopped that.

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