I want to share an email a someone sent me about their clutter situation:
"I have two stereo pieces in which the CD part no longer works. The radio in one works and the tape and the radio in the other works but I feel so angry even looking at them. I want to discard them but hold on to them for radio parts. I want to get rid of both and buy myself a brand new piece...I know you'll tell me to get rid of them because they make me so angry every time I look at them."
I think it can help to see how we sometimes see that a thing in our life is clutter, but we still want to hang onto it. The stereo pieces made her "feel so angry." But she still held on. It's common that we hang on to something even when it hurts us. I think we tend to over look the discomfort.
If something's presence is hurting us, physically or psychologically, it doesn't have a place in our lives. That's the criteria.
P.S. My client wrote back today and said, "Donated one of the broken stereo pieces today which was a very good move. I imagined how it would feel to finally get the new stereo and be able to play my CD's again. It made me so happy. I'll be bringing over the other broken piece to the thrift shop this week and get something new. I realize there's always an excuse to keep yourself in the muck and mire of depression and lethargy. In this case it was that I couldn't afford to buy the new stereo but it's only a $60 portable, not a $1500 stereo."