March 26, 2019 FEATURE

Downsizing and Decluttering

Robin Page West

An entire industry of professional organizers, storage lockers dotting the landscape, and even a Netflix series on decluttering leave no doubt that having too many things is a pervasive circumstance that causes headaches for many of us. It makes things hard to find, promotes feelings of overwhelm, and complicates cleaning. Websites, books, articles, and checklists on how to deal with decluttering are popular, recommending variations on the common theme of taking stock and then categorizing (keep, discard, or donate). But is it really that simple? If so, why is this happening to so many of us in the first place, and once we've tidied one room or downsized into a smaller home, what's to stop the problem from recurring?

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