Sunday, October 11, 2009

Purging, how long to hold on to things

We all have things we hold on to. And different reasons why we hold on to them. I buy things on sale and hang onto them because I know I will need them "someday". Or, I have things that I used so much and so often at one time, but that I haven't used in a very long time. Or, I have things that I spent way too much money on and that I just haven't used in years.

Regardless, homes have only so much space. How long to hold onto things? Sooner or later, you realize that you either need to get rid of some stuff, get a bigger house, or rent a storage space!

I am an artist. So....I tend to collect a lot of art supplies. Papers, blank canvas, colored pencils, pastels, scissors, bottles caps, ribbons, pictures, inks, paints, brushes, stamps, the list goes on and on. Every art project seems to take it's own list of supplies. I make jewelery, scrapbooking, multimedia art canvas, niche dolls, pen and ink art works, artistic trading cards, knitting, sewing, the list goes on and on. And while a lot of these crafts take similar supplies, there always seems to be "one more thing" that is needed.

A few years back, I was into fused glass. I bought a glass kiln, tons of glass, cutters, molds, slumping molds, all the stuff to go into making things. And I made a whole slew of things as well! Tried selling my art, not much luck there. Two different shops, on-line in two or three different ways. Gave away a lot of it as gifts for Christmas, birthdays and simply as gifts at a gift exchange.

Two years later, it sits gathering dust. I haven't touched that kiln in two years. I see it in the garage, and it makes me feel....guilty. A weight of what I "should" be doing with it. Of an expense that is wasted. Hard to explain.

I decided this weekend, I would rather it were gone and that I made a little cash from it, than for it to be taking up space and making me feel the "shoulds" about it anymore. It was fine for a time in my life, I enjoyed the process of working with glass, but I moved on from it. I never gained enough expertise in it to be successful enough to sell my work, and without selling my work, I couldn't stay motivated enough to keep creating (nor could I afford to keep spending money on supplies!! Glass is expensive, not to mention electricity!).

So....why do you have some things that you hold on to? If some of your old things were broken, would you be upset, or would you shrug your shoulders, or be quietly relieved? Glad that you are no longer responsible for that item? Maybe it is the family silver that you are entrusted with...that is a pain to keep polished? Or a gift from a family member who points it out whenever they visit, but you actually hate? Or something that you loved at one time, but have since outgrown? It's okay to get rid of these things! Make space for things that are appropriate for THIS time in your life. Things that reflect who you are right now, rather than who you used to be or who someone else thinks you are.

1 comment:

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