Any De-Clutter Advice?

I’ve been reading and thinking a lot about simplicity and the elimination of clutter recently – maybe because the holidays and having a new child are two events that somehow create a mass of “stuff” around the house – and we just had both events happen in our lives recently.

The holidays and our new child are events for which I am very thankful.  And I am very thankful for all the many things with which people bless us.  But with the entrance of new stuff into the house mixed with the reality of limited space, Sarah and I are confronted with the reality that we need to de-clutter old and unused stuff in order to make space for the new.

I have a goal that our net amount of things that come in and out of the house will either be zero or negative.  That means that for every article of clothing we buy or receive, we donate a piece that we haven’t worn in forever (or maybe have never even worn!).  Otherwise, when we’re 80 years old, we’ll have mounds of stuff around the house and we’ll be on the Hoarders TV shows.

I’m a big fan of recycling things, donating things to thrift stores, and re-purposing certain things.  But sometimes it feels like a part-time job just managing stuff and clutter in our own house.

So my questions to everyone out there are these: What works for you?  How do you maintain simplicity with stuff?  How do you determine what leaves the house, when, and to where?  Do you know any good websites or books about de-cluttering and organizing?

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Jesse Joyner travels nationwide performing a comedy juggling act for family and kids events. He is also working towards his PhD in Educational Studies at Trinity Evangelical Divinity School (Deerfield, IL). He enjoys playing the piano, bird watching, and old houses. He lives in Richmond, VA with his wife, Sarah, and their daughter, Kezzie.

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