You may find yourself at a stage in your life that you need to downsize. Whether it’s because the kids have moved out and you don’t need the space anymore or it’s time to simplify, this can be a daunting process. It’s usually a much more emotional journey than simply de-cluttering to make more space. There can be a lot of sentiment attached to each item with a rich and wonderful history.

By Linda Eagleton, Creative Surrounds

Even trickier is when people have several generations’ worth of belongings; their own items, along with things they’ve inherited, and items their children never took with them when they moved out.

Here are some tips to help make the process a little easier:

• If possible, have a support network during this process. It’s lovely to be able to share the stories before letting go of items.

• If you’ve been storing things for other family members, it’s time to give them a deadline to pick up their stuff. If they want their belongings back they will need to pick them up, otherwise the items mustn’t be that important and can be donated or thrown out.

• Items that have been passed on from previous generations may be passed on to future generations. Ask children or nieces/nephews if they’d like certain belongings and ensure any story attached to the item is passed on with it.

• It’s important to be honest with yourself about what stage of life you’re in. If you’re no longer working, maybe it’s time to let all the corporate clothing go. Or if you no longer host the family dinner for 15 people, downsize the cooking utensils and crockery.

• Remember – by downsizing your belongings, you’ll spend less time maintaining them. Your space will be much easier to clean and you’ll be able to find what you’re looking for more easily. This, in turn, will ensure you have more time to do the things you really enjoy.

Linda is a Professional Organiser and runs her business Creative Surrounds in Sydney. She is dedicated to making her client’s homes and offices stress-free and functional. To contact Linda call 0415 143 498 or visit