This is an easy one. We all have stuff. Some have more than others. It could be determined by how much or how little stuff you had as a kid. It could depend on your other household members’ person to stuff ratio. At some point, though, we all have too much stuff. There isn’t an exact measurement or number that constitutes too much stuff. Hopefully, you know when you hit it. If you’re family or friends have to point it out, you’re probably already way past the line and may already be a hoarder. So how do you decide what stuff you need versus what stuff you just want?

Extra piece of plywood + sentimental, warped guitar + color printed album covers = Cool keepable stuff

Here are some simple tips:

  1. Unless it’s a kitchen tool, knick knack, medical device, or a stuffy black suit, if you haven’t worn or used it in 3-months, you should get rid of it.
  2. If it’s associated with a bad person or period, get rid of it.
  3. If it’s medically toxic or expired, get rid of it.
  4. If you have no idea what it is or can’t even remember where it came from, get rid of it.
  5. Repeat four step assessment a few times per year.

Now that you got rid of stuff (read: actually out of your house, garage, and into a donation center or dumpster), you can look at the stuff you still have to assess the viability of enhanced stuff placement (sounds fancy, right?). My example is an old guitar. It’s warped but has huge sentimental value. Setting it in a corner to collect dust didn’t seem like enhanced stuff placement. In that capacity, it looked like an old, broken guitar. As a wood guy, I took a plywood remnant from the garage. As a music lover, I searched my favorite album covers on the internet and printed them on normal paper. I glued them on the plywood and lacquered the whole thing. After that, it was just a matter of finding some odds and ends in my extra assembly parts collection (thanks Ikea) and using them to mount the guitar on the board. I finished it off with a few sentimental stickers to hide the mounting hardware on the front and threw it up on my Louffice wall (translation: Home office/Manly lounging area).

Yes, I know. There is no rocket science in this writing. It’s simply a reminder that (a) you don’t need a lot of stuff to be happy and (b) sometimes seemingly useless stuff can become artistic stuff. That is all.