#6 Decide what is important

Last month we considered tip #7 in our top ten about how to determine what will actually fit into your new space. This month, we focus on clarifying which possessions are of greater importance to you and should take with during a downsize.

It is often hard to differentiate the things that you like or are used to having around from those of actual importance or practical use. When striving to make this distinction, it is helpful to ask yourself 3 questions:

  • “If I had only 5 minutes before a disaster hit my home, what would I grab to preserve?” This process will help you identify your “treasure list.” It contains the things you couldn’t live without and only those things that you really love and value.
  • “What will my life be like in my new home?” Many moves come with some kind of lifestyle change. A move can involve one simple change or many changes. You may be moving to a job with new expectations, a new living situation with different amenities close by, or even to a location where the climate is completely different. Take time to imagine your life in your new home and environment. Consider what needs you will have there, what activities you will be involved in and what resources will be available around you. Perhaps your new job only requires casual attire, so the suits you used to wear everyday are no longer needed. Maybe you are moving to a great condo, but it has no garden space for you to use all your lawn & garden tools. You might be leaving a cold and snowy area for a warmer climate and find the boots, ski gear, and snow shovels will just get in the way.
  • “Which is greater… the worth of this item or the limitations it may put on my life?”Keeping too much or having unimportant items around can actually stop you from taking full advantage of opportunities. Everything we have comes with some kind of responsibility. It may require costly maintenance, a place to store it, or regular cleaning. For example, you may feel like you can’t get rid of your beautiful dining room table, but it will take up so much space in your new home that there will not be enough space to have the grandkids over. The pretty silver set that looks great on display requires regular polishing and cuts into your free time. Keep only the items whose personal value outweighs its costs.

Your space is valuable. Be selective about what you take with you. Move only the things that you need, love and will add meaning to your life.

Coming next month… #5 Save the memories

© 2019 Beth Giles

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