I will be the first to admit that 2 moves in 4 months is borderline insane. I will also tell you right now, that I don’t really recommend it if you want to remain on good terms with everyone in your life. It’s tiring and ridiculous and puts everyone in a bad mood.
Now I don’t regret it by any means. I am beyond thrilled with our new house and the way it has worked out, but I wouldn’t tout our method of buying a house as the ideal path to homeownership. It wasn’t really the actual act of moving that cause the chaos, I pinpointed the stress of our moves to one thing:
Suff. Yes, stuff. I am talking about all of the crap that you have that you keep because you think you will need it and you really don’t. It weighs you down and causes stress and clutter in your life. It’s real baggage that causes negative emotions.
Just how pointless having all this stuff was became apparent after our first move. Our rental came with a massive garage, so we decided then and there that we wouldn’t unpack anything that wasn’t completely necessary until we bought our permanent home. We left the things we didn’t need right away in boxes in our huge garage in order to save the misery of unpacking/packing twice.
Can you guess what happened? After 2 months of living there, we forgot about all of the stuff that wasn’t a necessity. There was less clutter, less to clean, and I had a much tidier playroom because our kids didn’t really need all the toys they had! I felt lighter, we all seemed happier and there was much more time for other fun things because we weren’t constantly having to tidy and move all our stuff around to make our house feel clean.
We decided before our next move we would go through all of that “stuff” and get rid of it. Every time I went to do it, though, I would walk out to the garage, take one look at it all, get completely overwhelmed and shut the garage door.
So do you know what we did? We moved all of that stuff to our new house and we have been overwhelmed with it all ever since.
Enter The Life-Changing Magic of Tidying Up. I picked this up in the airport on our way back form San Francisco and it’s as if the author was reading my mind. Marie Kondo talks about the emotional stress of having too much stuff, and the inability to keep our houses tidy because of it. She lays out a clear plan for going through the ultimate tidying, one that will take about 6 months if you do it right, and promises that if you do it the way she says you won’t have to waste any more time tidying up your house. Too good to be true? Maybe. But I decided to embark on this journey of ultimate stuff purging anyways.
If you are overwhelmed by the amount of tidying you have to do on a regular basis and you haven’t read this book yet, read it. I am going to follow her instructions for decluttering and organizing section by section and blog about it. Who knows, maybe in six months I will feel less overwhelmed by our stuff and more able to enjoy my newfound free time with my family.