Decluttering Tip #1: If It’s Broken and You (or someone else) Can’t Fix It, Don’t Replace It!

If it’s broken and you (or someone else) can’t fix it, get rid of it and don’t replace it!

This is quite possibly the easiest strategy for starting to declutter your living and working spaces because this one doesn’t involve your emotions. Look Ma, no guilt!

How many times have you broken something and immediately rushed out to replace it? Even if you already own something that serves the same purpose?

Next time, I challenge you: don’t replace something you broke. Do this, and you’ve painlessly downsized by one item, no worries about

This happened an astonishing three times this week. One was a pair of headphones that came with my blackberry (I went to hunt for a replacement and found that I own three other sets of headphones.) The other was an umbrella that died in a storm (I own two more of these). When my mechanical engineer husband couldn’t fix it, I knew it had to go out.

The other was a custard cup that cracked the entire way through. This could have turned into a tragedy because my grandmother gave these to my mom for her wedding. But you know, I have hundreds of other mementos of my grandmother (to be decluttered later). Oh, and I also have the entire china set that went with that custard cup. I happen to have three more custard cups. Who’s going to get upset if you get rid of something unusable?

(This doesn’t apply to things you actually do need, of course. I’m not going to tell you not to buy another toothbrush if you break the only one you own!)

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