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March of Trash 2022 clutter clearing challenge

Thanks to everyone who participated in the March of Trash 2022 clutter clearing challenge. The challenge was to find and clear one item of clutter per day. Clutter can become invisible, so a sheet of daily prompts called out specific qualities that clutter might have in order to make different items of clutter stand out every day.

Download or print all the daily clutter clearing prompts for March 2022: March of Trash 2022 Daily Clutter Clearing Prompts (PDF)

clothing
A stack of clothing to give away. This clothing did not fit after losing weight. Also see the video: What Clothes Fit Me Now? Clutter Clearing After Weight Loss
AA batteries
If you find alkaline batteries like these — dusty, corroded terminals, expired 7 years ago — don’t take the time to test them one by one. Put them in the trash. It is safe to assume they are all bad.
gloves
“Sooner or later, I had to ask — are they good enough to keep using?” Protective work gloves with holes in 9 fingers can no longer serve their intended purpose.
plastic grocery bag dispenser
Collect too many supplies, and they turn into clutter. That’s what happened with the plastic grocery bags in this dispenser. Read about the problem of excess supplies in the blog post: Excess Supplies: Clutter in Plain Sight.
crate of LPs
“I found the LP collection, but do I still have that turntable . . . or did I give it away ages ago?”

What Is the March of Trash Clutter Clearing Challenge?

Getting rid of junk can be habit-forming.

Well, okay, it’s probably not a habit that would form all by itself. You might have to work at it. You might have to practice day after day for an entire month for getting rid of junk to become a habit. And that’s the idea of the March of Trash Challenge.

Throw stuff away every day for an entire month.

For the month of March, look at your possessions day after day and find the things you aren’t using. Put them back into use, or throw them away, or pass them along to someone else who would use them. By the end of the month, you’ll have tallied at least 30 items in these three categories. That’s what you’ll do if you accept the challenge.

I know, it is not a super-big challenge. You might even be thinking you could do all that in just one day. But the idea is to create a habit by returning your attention to your stuff day after day, and taking action on it day after day. Besides, deciding which of your things you’re ready to let go of can be harder than you would expect — but it’s still easy enough to do if you approach it a little at a time.

What are the practical details? Here are some of the things you can do:

Put Things Back Into Use

The objective isn’t really to throw things away, but to have fewer possessions that are sitting around unused and neglected. Part of what you’ll be doing, then, is finding things you had lost, or forgot you had, or simply had in the wrong place, and putting them in a more sensible place so that they can be useful again. To offer a few examples, this might include:

Putting things back into use can take a considerable amount of time, so it can’t be the answer for everything. For some things you have, you just don’t have the time or the interest to use them yourself. That brings us to the next category.

Give Stuff Away, or Sell It

If you don’t really want to use something yourself, but it’s still perfectly good, the answer might be to sell it or give it away. Selling takes time, but it’s often the right approach for neglected possessions that have considerable commercial value and that can be sold without too much trouble. For the less valuable items or ones that would be a lot of trouble to sell, it’s easier to just give them away. Your options might include:

Throw Things Away

It’s hard to give some things away. They’re broken, or hard to clean, or not so inherently useful, or hopelessly out of fashion. It’s all too easy to imagine that your own stuff is more valuable than it really is. Sometimes you try to sell something only to find that you can’t give it away. The simple answer for things of minimal value is to throw it away. Here too you have options, which depending on where you are might include:

You don’t want to take up too much time figuring out how to get rid of something, so if it seems complicated, often the simple answer is to throw it away.

Space, Time, and Focus

Whatever the details of the way you get rid of something, the result is more free space for you to use. You will also find that you have more time with less stuff around, and you’ll have a stronger focus, as you are better able to focus on the work you do with the fewer possessions that remain. When you think about what you really want to accomplish, it can help you discover some of the possessions that you don’t really want to keep. Space, time, and focus are the ultimate objectives of the March of Trash Challenge. Throwing junk away, moving the trash out, is just a means to an end.

There you have it. Find your unused, neglected possessions, and get them moving again, and when you can’t do that, then at least get them out of the way. Do this day after day for the month of March, and there’s a good chance it will become a habit. Good luck!


2021

Download the scorecard:
PNG PDF
scorecard
“To the illumined mind the whole world sparkles with light.” —Emerson

Clutter Guru