Lessons Learned While Cleaning Out The House

As I’ve written in a previous post, my wife and I are moving. We having a growing family and with both of us working from home, we need some more room to work, live and raise our family. As part of this move was the need to clean out our house. What a chore that was! But as with most things in life, whether they be good or bad, I try to find some sort of meaning out of the situation. I like to do this as it allows me to learn and grow as a person. So what did I learn from cleaning out the house? Plenty. Read on to find out.

3 Things I Learned While Cleaning Out The House

#1. Wasted Money

We had a lot of junk. Most of it was in storage. I truly believe the saying “out of sight, out of mind” because it is true. I forgot about most of the stuff we had stored in our attic. As the days passed and I found more and more stuff, I began to estimate the amount of money we spent on these things. It was a lot.

Granted, some were gifts from others as well, but the lessons were still the same. They include:

Think long and hard before buying something. Many times we buy out of emotion. Take the time to really consider if you need the item or not. Don’t give in to your short term urges.

Get rid of things. If you are putting something into storage, think about it first. Why are you doing this? If it is Christmas decorations that is one thing. But if it is something else, like a picture, think about if you really will ever use it again. Most times the answer is no. So just get rid of it now. It will save you time in the long run. If you really are unsure, write a note to yourself to revisit the item in a month and then decide.

#2. Smaller House

When packing things up and cleaning out, I realized we had a lot more space than we thought. Yes we still need to have a bigger house, but we really don’t “need” all of the things we think we do. For instance, the Kitchenaid mixer is great, but is it really necessary when we use it once a year?
If you go through your house and are honest with yourself, odds are you could get by with a lot less stuff and as a result, not need as big of (or even need a bigger) house.

Of course, there are exceptions. For us, we need room since we both work from home and a two bedroom house with a child just isn’t cutting it. But it would be a different story if we were already in a larger house and thought we needed a bigger one.

#3. What’s Really Important

As you go through the task of cleaning out your house and you see the money you’ve wasted and the space all of the stuff you never really use takes up, you realize something about life. In the end, it is just stuff. We tend to buy things to make us feel better or fit in, but really the most important things are family and friends.

And if they really are your family and friends, they don’t care if you have the fanciest toaster oven or not. They don’t care if you have the latest tech gadget or not. All they care about is getting to spend time with you. The sooner you make this realization, the better off you will be both personally and financially.

Final Thoughts

In the end, it is important to take something away from every situation life throws at us. They might not all be deep thoughts that shake the foundation of our life, but they can be little nuggets that turn out to make up a big part of our lives.

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