I used to find myself holding onto ticket stubs, programs, photos, notes, cards, gifts, magnets, and other trinkets to remind myself of different events, vacations, even classes I attended or taught. I tossed everything in a memorabilia box, where I’d promptly forget about the things.
When I couldn’t close the cover, I pulled out the box and sorted through the items. Although there were items that jogged my memory, a pleasurable evening out with friends didn’t require that I hold onto a ticket stub. There were cute drawings from students I hasn’t seen for over a decade. Pretty cards with a signed name but no special note.
Spend 15-minutes looking through your memory box; are the items still meaningful? If you don’t have a memorabilia box, you could start gathering items from around the house and create one. (Not items that you display – unless you don’t need to look at them – but things that live in drawers or random boxes.
I think a memory box should be looked through once a year, not for decluttering, but for recalling the memories you’ve made a point of labeling as special.
Susan Caplan McCarthy
I'm Susan, a writer and teacher developing a second career as a Decluttering Coach.