“Should” items. Things you think are 'good for you', things you should use. For example: that yoga mat in the back of your closet, collecting dust. Now, I'm not promoting don't exercise. Not at all. What I'm saying is don't kid yourself.. I don't mean to be harsh here (and I hope I don't sound it), just real. Another example: Long overdue returns. Returns plague me ..like the great bubonic plague - iIt hurts me deep and on many levels: emotional, mental, even physical, etc.. yet, I keep these random items a bag, move them around the house. Sometimes, I put them in my car to take out, then transfer them back in the house, when I need all seats in my car. Then shuffle them around the house again. And on and on goes the cycle. Often, return window closes, and I've housed items that I don't need in my home - rent free. No more! My new rule of thumb is: I only 'save' things I will return for a week. After that, I'll save myself the mental anguish and donate them. Make a rule that works for your life, and stick to it. Another example from my life - craft projects with my kids - I have a TON, and they weigh me down. Buh-bye!
Things that cause you guilt. An example from my life is - anything that cost money to buy, and has outlived its purpose or beauty. I mean old Tupperware, dish towels. Please people!! Enough is enough. We come from a punitive culture, and our lives are ridden with guilt (the law, religion, society). And it's in all aspects of our lives. Do I do enough at home, for my kids, at work, entertaining, etc, etc. the list in endless. It's engraved in us, which causes so much bottling up of feelings and things -- 'saving' this, 'saving' that. Rid your lives of it all..!!!
Gifts you wish you never received. Again guilt!! It keeps us from passing it on. Please pass it along..! We're afraid of hurting people's feelings. Well, perhaps those people will stop buying you 'stuff', and save themselves some money in the process. As Kon Marie says, the gift's purpose was to bring joy (of giving) to the giver & make the receiver feel special. Purpose met, now move the poor item that will never live to serve another purpose in your life. If you don't like that bowl received, you're not going to wake up tomorrow and suddenly love it. Pass it along. Give it a second life, a second purpose - to bring joy to someone else.
Expensive items. This is a hard one, because it makes me feel like I'm being wasteful, and so hold on to items that provide no real value to my life. Giving it away or donating makes me feel like I'm wasting money - but in actuality, keeping them it will cost you more physical & mental burden. And in the long run, getting rid of these items will actually alter your value system, as it’ll make you rethink before you mindlessly buying again (because you'll maybe remember the pain of getting rid of this item).
Broken items. Stained, broken, need mending, etc, etc. Don't collect bad chi. You’re NOT going to fix it!! One week rule applies here too!
Unloved keepsakes & heirlooms. Guilt coupled with sentiments keep us from living in the moment. Gone! Memories don't need to be held on to via 'stuff'. Take a picture, get rid of things you don't use/ enjoy on a daily basis. In our home, we take pictures of our kids' art, or display a limited number. Excess pictures go away, or replace older ones already in frames (we frame 3 photos/ art for each of our two kids). Honor what you have. Don't keep something tucked away in a bin because it belonged to your aunt, but don't have room for. If your beloved aunt were to see the pain her stuff's causing you, she would tell you the same. I'm 100% certain of this.
Dud duplicates. Example: kitchen spares, 3 black solid v-necks. You’ll never use it “for a rainy day”, & they're taking up room in your life. Blankets and towels are another example!!
Inessential surplus. Like: manila folders, pens, pencils. Gone! You may keep spare/ extra toilet paper (essential surplus).
Paper. Esp now that you can find everything online these days. Account numbers. Menus, appliance manuals, etc. For important documents, create a google folder and save warranties & receipts of large purchase (electronics, appliances). For passport copies, bank acc. numbers & passwords, use a password saving site that scrambles your passwords, which you can access online, from anywhere in the world.
Old Electronics & Old cords. They’re unsightly & out of date, and they’re probably not worth anything.