Physical clutter is one thing, but emotional clutter is quite another!

It’s easy to recognize physical clutter because we can see it.

  • It clutters our countertops and desktops.
  • It messes up our closets and dresser drawers.
  • It is on full display in our garage and then in our basement.

But emotional clutter is not visible, it can’t be seen because it lives in our thoughts and in our feelings.

Emotional Clutter Overwhelms Us and Prevents Us From Letting Go of Physical Clutter

  • If you’ve ever felt GUILTY or ASHAMED of getting rid of some family heirlooms that were left specifically for you, but you didn’t like them or you knew you wouldn’t use them…
  • If you’ve ever felt SAD or a deep sense of LOSS when you try to let go of your mother’s china or your dad’s favorite rocking chair…
  • If you’ve WORRIED or been AFRAID to get rid of something because you might need it someday in the future…

Then you’ve already experienced the impact of emotional clutter. You already understand how difficult it is to let go of it.

Emotional clutter has been holding you back, stopping you from decluttering certain types of clutter. If you are interested in knowing more about how to let go of emotional clutter, go to my website, Design Services, LTD., and download my 5-Step Guide to Lose the Clutter, but Not the Memories.

When you follow the 5 steps, you will learn which type of emotional clutter is stopping you from decluttering, and how to let go of that emotional clutter.

5 Types of Emotional Clutter

1. Sentimental Clutter

These are items that you’ve attached meaning to because they comfort you and make you feel close to a loved one at a particular time or place in your life.

They are hard to let go of because you might be afraid or concerned that you will lose the memory if you let it go.

2. Inherited Clutter

Family items that are passed on from one generation to the next are considered inherited clutter. You might feel obligated to keep it so you feel guilty or ashamed if you don’t want it and once you get rid of it.

3. Abundance Clutter

Having multiples or excess amounts of coffee mugs, water bottles, shoes, etc. can provide a sense of security. Those “just in case” items are examples of abundance clutter.

Letting go of these can be scary even though you know you have way too many.

4. Aspirational Clutter

If you have items sitting in your closet, basement, or bookshelves that are tied to a life that you wish you had, or that you hoped to have already accomplished, this is aspirational clutter.

It might give you a real sense of loss or failure because you didn’t accomplish that yet

For example, books on aspirational, speaking or clothes that are three times smaller in hopes that you will get there someday

5. Bargain Clutter

If you have an abundance of items you bought on sale “just in case.”

  • Clothes you bought on a clearance rack.
  • Multiple large packages of toilet paper or paper towels.
  • Shoes that you just had to have because they were on sale.

Letting go of these bargain clutter items might be difficult because you spent good money on them, and it would be wasteful to let them go… Even though you may not need it.

  • Once you start to recognize the type of clutter that prevents you from successfully decluttering,
  • Once you understand the emotions you’ve attached to it,
  • Once you understand why you made it important and gave meaning to it, it becomes much easier to let it go.

You can start to live a simpler life without the emotional clutter weighing you down.

Rita’s Minimalist Essentials

Jumpstart your decluttering journey with our 60-page all-in-one decluttering workbook and companion. Packed with checklists, calendars, progress trackers, and more, it’s your essential tool from start to finish.

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Do you want to learn more about downsizing and decluttering? You can also connect with me by following me on Facebook and LinkedIn. Would you like complimentary advice from the downsizing designer? My book Downsize Your Life, Upgrade Your Lifestyle: Secrets to More Time, Money, and Freedom is now available in paperbackaudio, and on Kindle! Get your copy soon.