When I was in my kitchen the other day, I heard a loud crash from upstairs. I ran to see what the noise was. To my dismay, a shelf in my office had broken and all the contents fell to the floor. At first I was dismayed to see everything strewn about on the floor. But then I realized I had a golden opportunity to finally put this stuff where it belongs. It has been an eyesore in my office for quite some time and this was now my moment to take it on. I don’t have many eyesores but this one was a doozie. I gathered all of it up and carried it downstairs. I tried to keep it in one or two piles as I put it out on my kitchen island. I needed to find a place to spread things out as I picked up each item, one at a time.
One of the best ways to go through a pile of stuff is to keep it in a pile, going through each item one at a time and have space to spread out as you sort and categorize.
I began sorting and sorting more until I had six or seven mounds of school papers, pictures, artwork, vacation memorabilia etc.
This is an arduous task and one I personally don't care to do (or it would be done on an ongoing basis). But now, I am making great progress. I started putting our vacation memories and pictures in my photo books, which is actually fun. But on the flipside, throwing things away that are unnecessary to keep is freeing.