Christmas is usually a time of influx in our homes. More gifts, more stuff. But more stuff doesn’t equal more joy. Often times, it means moving on to the next best gadget or toy. The gifts are replacements, but we don’t actually replace out stuff. We just push it to the back of the cabinet, down to the basement, or up to the attic.
Product Life Cycle
Things break over time and kids grow up and out of certain toys. This is all normal. Replacing an old cell phone that isn’t working well makes sense. Growing out of Sesame Street toys and moving onto legos is normal.
When these life transitions happen, let’s make sure that we give our old items a new life. Recycle old electronics. Donate, sell, or regift still nice toys.
The What Ifs
If your reasoning for holding onto old toys is for a future baby, that’s ok, but limit those items to a single box of your favorites. I’m sure there is an obnoxious noise-maker that you would be happy not to have around with your next little one.
Maybe you’ve held onto duplicate items in the past because you may need them again. But here’s a better question. If your old item still works great, why do you have a new version? Can you forgo or return this new item and spend the money on something you actually need or save it for future expenses?
If you love the new item, can you sell your old one to someone who is looking for a still working used item at a discounted price? You’ll help someone and get a little money for future expenses or savings.
Take control of the clutter this holiday season. Instead of just adding new items to your home, become intentional about your stuff. Here’s how:
- Grab a cardboard box. Label it DONATIONS
- When you get a gift, ask yourself if this item is something you want to keep.
- If so, pick something old from your home to place in the donation box. If the gift is a replacement item, such as a new wine bottle opener, the easy trade is the old wine bottle opener.
- If you decide you would rather keep your current items, can you return the new item? If so, great. If not, you can sell it second hand? Otherwise, place it in the donation box.
The goal is to keep the same number of items in your home. You don’t need more stuff, you just need the items that are going to bring you the most value.
If you decide to take on this challenge, communicate this challenge with your spouse and children. Let them know that you are all doing it (not just the kids) and that the choice is theirs - to keep the new toy or keep the old toy.
You don’t have to complete the challenge perfectly. The goal is to be intentional. To acknowledge when you have items that you no longer use, and taking the steps to give them new life outside of your home.
Are you up for the challenge? Comment below if you plan to try ONE IN ONE OUT this holiday season. We can support each other in our efforts!