One of the benefits of moving is that you get to go through everything you own, piece by piece and decide whether or not you want to drag it with you into your shiny new life in your shiny new home. As many of my friends have pointed out, this is also its major drawback.

Because there was an overlap between taking on our new apartment and closing on our house, Alan and I have been able to be really methodical in the sorting process on this move. As the deadline draws closer, I know that some things that shouldn’t make the cut probably will, but for now, we are jettisoning a whole lot of stuff that no longer serves us. And that feels really, really good.

There are a lot of unquestioned assumptions that go into generating our clutter. Things that we’re told we have to hang on to that we just accept until the piles grow too big and the feelings associated with them drag us down too low. I’m learning to question those assumptions.

A few years back, I let go of my high school yearbooks. I hated high school. Never signed up for anything. Wasn’t at all popular. Was so undistinguished, in fact, that if ever I meet up with someone I went to school with back then, they don’t remember me at all. And yet, because we’re told that our yearbooks are precious mementos, I dragged those suckers from house to house to house, allowing them to radiate their Ugh energy into my life for far too long. It felt good to send them on their way.

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