Be brave. I know you can do it. Put your hand on the knob and slowly turn it. Go for it. Open….The….. Closet…..You know the one I’m talking about. The SCARY one. The one that you avoid getting anything in or out of because you are afraid that things will come crashing down on your head. THIS is mine. I literally had nightmares about this closet. Just thinking of it filled me with anxiety but oddly, instead of doing anything about it I just let it fill up with random stuff for 5 whole years.
This one is in my front hall. It is the first thing you see when you come in the front door. Not exactly the welcome I’d like to offer. It is “supposed” to be the closet for guests’ coats. It should actually be renamed “the land of forgotten junk.” If I didn’t know where to put it, this is where it went. I have literally 3 different (broken!) appliances to clean the floor, including one with a missing battery, one that no longer sprayed, and one with a crack so large the filter kept falling out.
Clearly I have a problem.
Perhaps I’ve just been too lazy to pitch them, who knows. There are crutches, craft projects, and coats long outgrown by the kids. Pictures and puzzles topple off the shelf as old boots and dust bunnies fight for space. There was only one answer:pull out all of the junk, examine each piece, and only put back things we could really use.
Here is what I did to get rid of the junk
- Hooks: Instead of having plastic hangers flying all over the place, I decided that it would be much easier to teach my children to hang up THEIR OWN coats if they had hooks, like at school, instead of fighting hangers. This also allows them to hang up their bags, both school and soccer/dance.
- One bin was added to catch all the winter/summer gear depending on the season- currently hats, gloves, and scarves.
- The second bin is for kids’ daily wear shoes, they have never made it upstairs, so I figured, why fight it?
After all the work was complete, I began to wonder, “What took me so long?” I knew it had to be done. I had pinned about a million images filled with amazing ideas like THIS and remarkable before/after pics like THIS
Every Pinterest search yielded “perfect” closets.
Finally…IT HIT ME! My quest for “perfect” totally overwhelmed me into inaction. I didn’t know where to start. In my head, I pictured perfectly griege horizontal stripes, a pretty fabric covering a bench seat, beautiful glass knobs functioning as hooks, and the list goes on and on…all these amazing ideas in my head kept me from doing anything at all!
I was so afraid that I wouldn’t end up with my very own amazing before/after pics that for 5 years, I did nothing at all. I let my own fear of imperfection keep me from trying at all. Of course, this is NOTHING against the amazing work of fellow bloggers and pinners (especially those picture above!) who spent no doubt countless hours of work.
Yes, it is a closet, but getting rid of your junk means so much more
Sure, you say, it’s a closet. Clean it out and move on. Yes, you are probably right, it is just a closet. But what is there to learn from my junk filled closet you ask….? Here it is:
- Don’t let your own fear of what you might discover keep you from cleaning out your own “junk.” We all have “junk” both literal and metaphorical that we need to clean out and examine from time to time. Only put back things that are used to make life better or happier for you.
- Don’t let your own fears keep you from just jumping in and giving it a try. You never know what you might find.
I would NEVER want my children to avoid doing something out of fear that it might not turn out as perfect as they wanted it to be.
Doing this reminded me of several times when I was younger. My room was a perpetual disaster, much like my closet. My mom would often come in, as I sat surrounded by piles of my own junk, and just sit with me as I sorted through the mess and put things away properly. She didn’t usually help me since it was most definitely a mess of my own making, but more importantly she was there to support me and encourage me to fix the mess myself.
Don’t ever underestimate this vital role you might play in helping someone else sort through their own junk. Be supportive. Be encouraging. Be there.
Will I go back and eventually add a pop of color? Maybe a bench? Perhaps some inspiring quotes? I’d like to think so. Until then, I will just be happy that I can, without fear, open the door and love what I find inside.
I hope you take some time and have some courage to clean out your own junk. In case you missed it, go back and check out my first post in the series on Finding Balance. Until next time, don’t forget to smiles, and make everyday a Sunday!