Simplifying vs. Downsizing

bigstock-Mottoes-On-Pebbles-2159937Is there a difference between simplifying and downsizing? Not really. Using the word “simplify” is a gentler way to identify the real action of downsizing.

If we want to move a quantity of belongings out of our space, we can either downsize them or simplify the space. Whichever term you prefer, it’s actually the same action.

Some areas where we can simplify are:

  • Kitchen: how many pots and pans do we actually use of the quantity we’ve collected over the years? Does that cast iron frying pan ever see the stovetop? As we age, we usually lose some strength, so lifting this kind of weight becomes more difficult. Yes, I know things taste better when cooked in cast iron, not to mention the benefits of the ingesting the iron itself. But there comes a time when we must admit we don’t use the heavy cookware and let it go.

Then there are the dishes. How many people do you feed, usually? How many dishes do you have? Do you ever use the “good” dishes any more? If not, why not pass them along to someone who will? You could donate or sell them instead.

Simplify your kitchen and enjoy the feeling of freedom that brings.

  •  Linen closet: how many beds do you have? How many sets of linens do you have for each bed? Are there sheet sets in your linen closet that have no beds that they fit? As a general rule, only two to three sets of sheets are needed by the average family. If you use flannelette or fleece sheets in winter, these would be in addition to the original two or three. In fact, you may not even need three sets for both seasons. If you have sheets and pillow cases that don’t have beds, let them go along with the extras for the beds you do have.

 The same goes for towels. Two sets per person living in your home are sufficient. That also includes beach towels if you swim.

 Extra bed linens, towels, blankets etc. can be donated to your local animal shelter or other charity.

 Simplify your linen closet to easily see what you have and know that everything there is current.

  •  Books: do you keep every book you purchase? This is a difficult subject for me because I love my books, however I’ve implemented an plan to pass on books that I’ve read that I know I won’t read again. Some I know I’ll re-read, so I keep them. Go through your books and decide which category they fit into—re-readers or not. Then get rid of the ones you won’t read again. I give my cast-offs to the local public library for them to either shelve or sell to purchase other books, as they choose. You might instead take yours to a local bookstore that will give you credit to purchase other books, or donate them to a charity.

 Simplify your library by letting go of some books to make space for others, or to add artwork on the shelves that have been freed. Doing this will add interest to your shelves and showcase other treasures.

 These are only three areas that you can tackle to simplify (downsize) your belongings to enjoy a, dare I say, simpler life…

Where will you begin to simplify your surroundings? Please share with us in the comments box below so others can benefit from your hard work?


© 2013 Moreen Torpy

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Moreen Torpy is the De-Clutter Coach, a Trained Professional Organizer, Author, and Speaker. Her new book is Going Forward: Downsizing, Moving and Settling In. See for more about the book including where to purchase it, and to learn about her organizing services and other books.


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