Don’t you hate it when an unlikely confluence of events makes it too hard to procrastinate any more? It had to happen eventually:
You know all those carefully orchestrated piles of stuff in your closet? They have been sending out an SOS for months now — but you have continued to ignore their heartfelt pleas despite avalanche after avalanche. The bottom of your closet now more closely resembles the aftermath of a violent tornado than the place that should house your clothes.
Spring is here and it is the perfect time of year to tackle the piles of clothes that have accumulated over the summer, fall, and winter months. The piles have only gotten bigger and bigger, and no matter how hard you glare at them they refuse to animate themselves and walk back to their appointed homes. Now it is time to find your summer clothes, but they seem to be at bottom of every pile.
So get started!!
Tackle the pile that is right in front of you! Whenever you see a big mess half of your time is spent stressing over where to start. Just sit down and tackle the first thing you see and start making three piles: clean, dirty, or donate.
Set up a system that you can live with and keep going over time. Keeping all your shirt, pants, suits, sweaters, and outerwear separated is probably good enough. Be realistic! That magical unicorn of a colour-coded closet where you can see beautiful rainbows of textiles when you get dressed in the morning might be awesome, but you will not be able to maintain it.
There is a high likelihood that if you have been walking on your clothes now for months they need to be laundered again. This is also a good time to get ride of anything that has permanent stains, unintended rips, or is perpetually smelly.
Be honest with yourself, when was the last time you actually wore that?? If you haven’t worn it in at least 2 years, why not donate it? There are many of worthy clothing donation sites across the country. American Cancer Society Discovery Shops, Salvation Army, Career Gear to name a few. This article has a more complete rundown of where to donate.
It’s tax deductible, so don’t forget to get a receipt! Interested in what happens to your clothes after your donate? Check out this great story on the afterlife of our clothes from Planet Money.
The other option if it is a particularly nice item is a resale shop. Some resale shops will even schedule pick-ups if you are selling a large enough collection.
Keep your closet clean throughout the year! If you neglect it and let the piles reclaim your closet you know you will be doing this again next spring when you would rather be napping on the couch listening to the rain.