Do I want to do more or do I want to do less?

"My only regret is not having a yard sale."

I can usually predict it down to the week when a client will make reference to having a yard sale.  Recently a client said, "I'm surprised that you don't encourage yard sales."

As we were loading seven donation bags in my car, I turned to her and said, "Have you ever had a yard sale?" with one eyebrow raised.

She started to laugh and said, "Okay, I see what you mean. I had one and swore I wouldn't have another one." 

There are pros and cons to hosting a yard sale.  It is a great motivator to clean out the garage or to purge the house once a year.  It can also fund a small home project or a mini-vacation.  The downside is that it takes time (a lot of time) to: 

  1. pull out the items

  2. price the items

  3. market the sale

  4. drag it all out at 5:30am on sale day

  5. haggle and negotiate for four hours

  6. pack up what didn't sell and transport it for donation

It's that moment when the clock says 2:30pm, the tables are put away, the donations are taken, and you are ready to grab yourself some lunch that you realize it wasn't worth it for $300.  

Do I want to do more? Or do I want to do less?

The old saying rings true, "Just because you can, doesn't mean you should."

Decluttering is an eye-opening process. Time and again we run across things 

  • that need to be fixed, or 

  • returned to a neighbor, or 

  • sold because it has some value.  

If the goal of decluttering is to create space, then adding more to our plate by way of time is self defeating.  

Instead of subtracting from the problem, you begin to add to it.  There are lessons to be learned from the act of letting go of the things that we wasted money on, that don't work, that we bought and thought we would use.  

The transformation happens when we let go freely and openly.

Hosting a yard sale only prolongs the transformation since the stuff still lives in the home until the day of the sale. And don't let someone offend you by offering some lowball price for an item that you love and feel is priced accordingly.  Five years later, it may still be sitting in your garage.  

The goal we seek is simplification and conscious consumerism.  Let go and feel the freedom.  It is worth far more than any yard sale income. 

Let It Be Easy

Jennifer Burnham