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part ii: 6 steps to a successful closet purge

i am sick of moving but i am more so sick of moving things i don’t wear, want or need. since i knew that i wasn’t going to live at home for longer than probably 6 months, i was proactive and started going through paperwork, clothing, photos, books and anything else i would move to my new home – which is now known as st. louis.;)

i have a foolproof purging system and these are the components:

1 | be ready to try things on. the classic closet purge fail comes from the “oh, i don’t know – i probably just haven’t seen it on me recently” while tucking it back into your closet because you’re too lazy to try it on and realize, right then and there, that the top from high school just might not ever fit the same again. (which is ok!!!) try everything questionable on. have on proper undergarments because let’s be honest, no one ever got any good shopping done in a sports bra – same goes for your closet.

2 | stop feeling bad about the money wasted. this is a hard hump to get over but this is the way i see it – you basically have two options: 1. see the wasted money, save the item and continue to waste said money or 2. see the wasted money, donate/give away the item and turn that frown upside down.

3 | be realistic about your budget post purge. for example, i would love to get rid of all of my flats and start over. truly all i wear is nude flats and i don’t love the embellishment on my black ones. however, i don’t have the money right now to buy ALL the shoes i have on my list at once. so, be realistic about your budget. get rid of things you’re really not going to wear but keep some that you can keep until you have the moolah to get what you want.

4 | be realistic about future changes in circumstances. while i was doing these purges, i had to keep reminding myself that although i wanted to get rid of the two pencil skirts i bought my senior year of high school, i didn’t know what the dress code would be at my future job. if you are looking for a job, about to have a baby or really any big life event, perhaps get rid of some of those pieces but keep a couple in case future circumstances demand them. (mine didn’t –> pencil skirts are gone-o)

5 | be intentional about how you get rid of it. something that really struck me in seven by jen hatmaker was when she reflected on the way people typically give away clothing which is to bag it up and drop it off. with a clap of your hands, it’s gone and you can stop thinking about it. she took her purge to the next level and gave away her clothing in person. she, along with some of her friends also purging their closets, made basically a second-hand shop in one of their guest bedrooms and helped members of their community as needed. for me, i sent some clothes off to friends and tried to truly be “green” in the real sense of the word – simply making products last longer by passing them on. by doing something like these two examples or even just driving to a local womens’ shelter and seeing how little some people have, it’ll make you think before you buy something you don’t need down the road. try to give it away in person so you can see the effect and let that sink in.

6 | purge more than once. my mom and i agreed recently that you have to be consistent in purging your closet otherwise you’ll quickly get sucked back in to that more is more mindset. i think the idea of spring cleaning once a year is rubbish. if you want to actually be conscious of your spending, do it once a month. this way, those items you thought you were CERTAINLY going to wear again can be looked at again in a few weeks and labeled as a ‘yes’ or ‘no.’ it also allows you to reevaluate after seasons pass and circumstances change.

purging has been good not only to curb my spending but to focus my heart on what is actually important. one of my favorite instagrammers, @jennaskitchen, posted this quote on instagram the other day and i think it sums up perfectly what i have found from wearing some items over and over and settling with less for now. she posted this from the book love warrior:

“You will meet plenty of people who are pretty but haven’t yet learned how to be beautiful. They will have the right look for the times but they will not glow. Beautiful women glow. When you are with a beautiful women you might not notice her hair or skin or body or clothes, because you’ll be distracted by the way she makes you feel. She will be so full of beauty that you will feel some of it overflow onto you. You’ll feel warm and safe and curious around her. Her eyes will twinkle a little and she’ll look at you really closely, because beautiful wise women know that the quickest way to fill up with beauty is to soak in another human being. Women who are concerned with being pretty think about what they look LIKE, but women who are concerned with being beautiful think about what they’re looking AT.”

so last but not least, if you feel like you might have a little less for awhile as you rework your closet, that’s okay. i’ve noticed that people don’t notice. a post coming tomorrow on how to take these purges and use them to make the perfect closet for you. i call it “shopping intentionally” and it’s the best.

 

vibed to the sound of my freezer humming. i am literally sitting on the floor of my kitchen. #whatislife

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