What Are You Holding On To?

I have been beating my head against a wall this morning.  That wall’s name is Boss.  We do research.  What is invariably involved in research is lots of paper.  Some of that paper, like consent forms, we are required by law to keep for 7 years.  Okay, fine.  Some of that paper is surveys or locator forms or all manner of other paperwork associated with a study.  In my office there are FIVE file cabinets.  Only 2 of these actually have projects that have been active in my time here.  So I’ve been on a crusade to get rid of a lot of this paper.

Me: None of these projects have been active in years.  All of the data has been entered electronically.

Boss: But I’m not ready to get rid of it yet.  I might do something with it.

Me: We both know you’re too busy with current projects to ever go back to this old data, and by the time you are, you will be retiring and the data will be so old, it will be wholly irrelevant.  Plus it’s already been entered electronically.

Boss: I’m not ready to get rid of it yet.


I know perfectly well she will NEVER USE THIS DATA again.  She just wants it to molder and take up room in my office where it is out of sight and fully out of mind.

I did, at least, manage to talk her into letting me shred the locator forms for the project that was over four years ago.  We’re never contacting these people again, so we don’t need it anymore…

It puts me in mind of all the stuff we have in storage and the things that I’ve held on to over the last five years in our house just because “I might use it.”  Honestly, I think I’m past this.  I need to acknowledge I’m never gonna be super tiny again, so a lot of those clothes can go to Goodwill.  Some of the stuff in the attic–same deal.  I never remember it’s there until Christmas when we unearth it beneath the Christmas decorations.  It can all GO.  I’m tired of storing things that have no value or use to me.  So garbage or Goodwill, it’s all gonna go!   I’m determined to declutter my life, my office, my house, and my brain.

What are you hanging on to that you don’t really need?

8 thoughts on “What Are You Holding On To?

  1. Ahh. You have an office hoarder. Im sure their house may be worse. The only thing I am holding onto are old stories in spiral notebooks I wrote 40 years ago and clothing that is too small.

  2. Clothes! That’s what I keep hanging onto. I have sizes 6, 8, 10, 12, 14, and 16 in my closet. I know I’ll never be a size 6 again. But will I be an 8? That one’s iffy. But at least a 10! These are the thoughts that keep going through my mind. But I really should just get rid of all those clothes and start over as I lose weight. I should. Really.

  3. If you would have asked me this September 3rd my answer would have been drawers, closets, storage bins chock full of odds and ends in every room of our home of things we kept because we “might use them someday”. Having lost all those items from 30 years of marriage when our home burned on the 4th of September can say now the only thing having a hard time getting rid of is my books that will not reread. Having lost hundreds of new and gently used books unread by me yet, plus thousands that had read and kept my books are my hot spot. Clothes cannot possibly wear again have no problem parting with, other small items either.

  4. When my parents moved out here a few years ago, they brought my entire childhood with them. My mom saved everything. Of course, she had a whole unfinished half of a basement to store stuff in. I managed to get rid of a lot of it and get it down to three bins of dolls, school art projects and awards, baby clothes and scrapbooks from important trips. Or so I thought. The other day a huge box fell out of the closet in my office. It was the BOX I DIDN’T WANT TO DEAL WITH. Sheet music and lesson books, a theater scrapbook from 1990 that was supposed to go back to the theater in 1991, cassette tapes out the wazoo, photos and photos and photos. I’m conflicted. For some reason this box is the hardest to get rid of, which is silly because I’d forgotten all of that stuff was even in there.
    But, I purge twice a year and I think I can muster up enough courage to toss it during the spring clean.

    Good luck getting rid of all your unwanted stuff!

  5. Our collection of VHS tapes and the VCR! I was surprised to see what a huge collection we have. I wrote down all the titles, so that I can either get digital copies or buy the DVD. Also got rid of one our DVD players, since we really only use the Playstation to play movies on. But our entertainment center was so dusty anyway. It needed to be cleaned. And I got rid of the old, ugly bookshelf that was home to the VHS tapes.

    I need to work on the office next, but most of that stuff is my husband’s, ugh. Wish me luck!

  6. When you made the comment of accepting your physical weight, and giving away those clothes, I don’t think I’ve reached that point yet (mentally). I’ve even bought clothes thinking it will motivate me to lose the weight and it hasn’t LOL> I guess I might have to do the same. I re-organized my closet, (new hobby) but…I re-organized it with some things that may need to bounce. LOL> hmmm, so what do I do with those empty spaces once I get rid of them.

  7. I got rid of all my smaller clothes. If I ever get to be that size again, then I deserve to buy new stuff. It was so freeing to only have one closet with clothes. I have baskets on the top shelf that rotate the seasonal wear. It is amazing how quickly things collect.

  8. Paper. Lots of paper. Drafts of stories, bins full of books that don’t fit our library, old diaries, old address books, brochures of places I’ve been that haven’t made it into scrapbooks yet…
    I need an intern!

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