7 things you could throw away to make yourself feel better

This time of year is a great time to have a clear out, get rid of all the clutter in your kitchen cupboards or throw out the things you don't need or want and are filling up your dresser drawers and taking space that could be used for something better.

We all spend so much time (and money) buying and storing things we rarely use just because we can. Or more to the point, we hold onto things we no longer use or need.

1. Old make up

We're all guilty of it aren't we? We buy that shade of lipstick thinking it will look amazing only to learn that the colour looks totally wrong on you and you'll never use it again. But you don't throw it away. You think to yourself "what if I change my mind?" - but will you, really?

The same goes for old nail polish, eye shadow, all of it. Check the use by date and if it has passed throw it in the bin. 

If you've had something for more than six months, and it's still not repaired, it's clutter. 

Gretchen Rubin

2. Frayed or stained towels

Towels are one of those things I hold onto forever - even when they're really tatty and don't do the job they're meant for anymore. I have towels that are older than BP! But recently I was in the supermarket and saw some lovely looking fluffy towels and wondered why mine don't look like that anymore. The honest answer is because they're so old and so I decided to throw out all the old towels, the ones that are stained or not useful anymore and I bought some new ones. The new ones are much better and I won't have to think about getting new ones again for a while.

3. Old glasses or sunglasses

Being someone who has had hundreds of pairs of glasses over the years this is definitely something I'm guilty of hoarding. And the stupid thing is I have no idea why - it's not like I can use them again because the reason I get new glasses is because my prescription has changed and the old ones don't do the job anymore. Yet I still keep them! Crazy. 

When I had laser-eye surgery I did throw out all my old glasses, thinking that I wouldn't need them again. However, after my eyes reverted and I've now had glasses for years again I have a huge store of old glasses that I'll never use. I really need to get into the habit of throwing the old ones away. Keeping one set is okay, just in case you lose or break your current ones but any more that that is completely pointless.

4. Old electronics

Okay so this isn't really one I can say much about - the Hubby is a huge hoarder and refuses to throw away old electronics because they "might be useful one day". I don't know when this day will come but it's there, just in case. 

To be honest though what the Hubby keeps are things like old consoles (think Nintendo GameCube and Playstation 1) and given that he has worked in the games industry for more than 20 years I guess I have to let him off. 

What you should be throwing away though are things that don't have any value - old remote controls for the TV you got rid of 5 years ago, the old microwave that packed in. They're just taking up space and you will never use them again.

5. Old receipts

Again I have a habit of having a handbag full of old receipts, they get screwed up into the bottom of my handbag and I don't bother to clear them out. I'm not keeping them for any reason in particular, especially the supermarket receipts, but they're there filling up my handbag with what is essentially rubbish. 

The inside of your handbag could look like this!

Occasionally I'll clear out the receipts, checking to make sure I don't need any of them, and my bag always feels tons lighter. I feel better too because I have lots more space in my handbag for a whole new range of receipts!

6. Old bedding

Bedding is one of those things you use again and again, even when it gets holes in it or looks so old and tatty that you can barely fit it to the bed without it falling apart. A couple of times I have been in bed, turned over, and my foot has gone through the sheet. It was so worn that it couldn't cope with my leg sliding over it anymore - that's when you know it's time to buy new!

7. Lidless Tupperware containers

Okay admit it, you have hundreds of containers in a cupboard in your kitchen that no longer have lids. They did once but the lid went missing decades ago and you still haven't been able to find it. Well... me too. I went through my cupboard recently because it annoyed me each time I needed a container and couldn't find the lid. 

I pulled out all the containers and lids and paired them up, if a container had no lid it went in the bin. I now have a cupboard full of sorted containers and it is much easier to get a container when I need it - they even have the lids attached!

The more I examine the issue of clutter, the more effort I put into combating it, because it really does act as a weight. 

Gretchen Rubin

A quick clear out of these things will make you feel so much better. A lot of the time we hold onto our old things thinking that we need to when in fact buying something new will feel a whole lot better and you'll get rid of the old and tatty things.

When did you last have a clear out?

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