We become attached to our stuff, but do we really understand why?

All humans keep things and maybe there is a logical reason for this behaviour.  If you are one of those people who keep things ‘just in case’ one day you might need them or you know you have things you don’t use, but keep anyway… watch this 4 minute video!

It’s pretty interesting, right? The video suggests that a majority of human beings keep things because of an internal need. 

And don’t get me wrong, it’s not necessarily a bad thing. We share some tools to help you assess whether or not you’re keeping too much, but you can read more about that in our previous post.

So let’s get back to why we keep things we don’t need.

Here are the TOP 7 main reasons (but there are many):

  • Gifts – we received them as a kindness from someone else.
  • Memories – just looking at them transports us to a different time.
  • Feeling – nothing gives us more comfort than that item.
  • Practicality – it isn’t broken, so I’m not changing it!
  • Just In Case – you might need it one day and don’t want to buy another one.
  • Storage – you have lots of space so why not keep it?
  • Lack of Time – life is busy and who has the time to downsize and declutter?

The TEDEd Video brings up the theory of The Endowment Effect and this basically means that we keep and/or value things more if we own them. 

If you feel that you might be keeping things you don’t need here are some helpful suggestions for starting the Decluttering process.

I agree in the fact that I would prefer to own my own underpants rather than borrow them. However, I firmly believe in sharing economies. Why own, store, insure, look after, stress over, and pay for things that could be shared among many people. For example, using a library for digital and material content, a wood working shop full of every tool you can imagine, the local squash and fitness centre, etc.

Do you think that you place a higher value on things you own over things you share?

Why do you keep things you don’t need?

How to Declutter and Organize Any Space - Online Course

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Samantha and Emilio provide personal, home, and business organization solutions for individuals who are ready for change. They are Co-Founders of KW Professional Organizers, sought after public speakers and bloggers.