Whenever you make the decision to place some of your possessions into a storage unit, there is a moment of moral dilemma. Those images of happy moments with the items you are about to box up or throw out flash before your eyes and before you know it, you have been unsuccessful in getting rid of anything at all, and instead you are stuck with all of your old stuff and no room for growth. This is, perhaps, a testament to the emotional state we are often in when it comes time to place things in boxes and to throw old things out. Perhaps we are preparing to move off to college and are having a hard letting go of old memories and memorabilia from our childhoods. Perhaps we are going through the possessions of a friend or a family member and trying to pick up the pieces of ourselves that they left behind when they passed away. These can be really difficult emotional times, so it is all the more important to keep a clear head about you when downsizing. You need to be well aware of your emotional attachment to some items, while simultaneously recognizing the importance of letting other things go. And perhaps this is exactly what we all need to do when reorganizing our emotional lives as well: recognize what is good and healthy to keep while also determining what we can and need to let go of.
There happens to be a term for downsizing that seems to make the transition feel a little bit easier. In fact, thinking of your decisions as “rightsizing” rather than “downsizing” can be particularly helpful for you as you think about moving into the next phase of your life, with or without some of the stuff you have managed to accumulate over the years. Rightsizing means carefully thinking about what is the right amount of stuff for you to own at this given time at this stage of your life, while also keeping in mind what kind of changes and needs the future might bring. Keeping in mind that emotional attachment is important, how can we figure out what it right to let go of? Focusing on rightsizing is a forward way of thinking about having possessions. Instead of just owning stuff, you begin to think about the purposes that items hold in your life. You determine what helps you maintain a connection and contact with the past and what is a healthy level for doing so. Focusing first on the essential items that you must have to live and then moving on to other things certainly helps. Memorabilia, souvenirs, and other things can be great but not as just stuff; these items are great because of what they connect you to. Keep this in mind as you “rightsize”, knowing that the beauty of keeping a self storage unit available is that there is more space to hold onto these great items that are so important to you. You do not have to get rid of things just because you are leaving for a new chapter!