5 Tips on Letting Go — by Our Followers

Learn from what has actually worked for people.

A few weeks ago we asked our followers on Instagram to share their favorite tips on letting go of things — especially when it’s hard to let go.

The response was amazing as we got literally 100’s of helpful comments from passionate minimalists from all over the world.

Now, discussing every single one of those tips wouldn’t be practical, as it would be overwhelming at best. So to keep it short and sweet, let’s explore the top 5 tips from our followers on letting go of things.

1. The Weekend Getaway Test

Credit: @meghall

Imagine your spouse has decided to surprise you with a weekend getaway. They’ve packed some occasion-appropriate clothes and there’s no turning back.

At that moment, there will be some items you’ll be hoping to have with you. But on the flip side, you’ll also instantly think of a few things you’ll wish they haven’t packed. Things that would be appropriate for the occasion, but you’d still rather not have them.

That second list of items is the ones your mind is ready to let go of. Maybe not consciously, but on a subconscious level, you’re ready to say goodbye to those clothes.

2. Would You Buy It Again?

Credit: @msmartinaelliott

This simple but powerful technique is perfect for items that are in decent condition, but you’re not sure how you feel about them.

All you need is to consider the following scenario:

If you were to lose this item and then come across it in a store, would you buy it again?

If your answer is outright no or a half-enthusiastic yes, then letting go of it is probably for the best.

3. Ignore the Sunk Cost

Credit: @sollinthecity

A lot of people struggle to let go of things because it feels like they’re wasting money.

After all, if you paid $150 for a blouse and your only option is to either sell it for $50 or donate it, then it’s a small wonder your brain is reluctant to let it go.

In your mind, you’re going to lose $100 by selling that blouse for $50. But the truth is, your brain is misleading you with what’s called a sunk cost fallacy. It makes you think you’ve invested so much, so you might as well keep it and get value for your money out of it.

In reality, however, you lost that money when you bought the blouse. Keeping it in your closet won’t change that.

On the contrary, every piece of clothing you don’t wear only takes up precious space in both your wardrobe and your mind.

This is why you need to remind yourself that the money you spent on your clothes is already gone. Letting go of them won’t cost you anything. But it will help you save space, energy, and even get some money by selling them.

On top of all that, you’ll be giving your clothes a chance to be cherished by someone who might need them.

4. Take a Risk and Get Rid of Something

Credit: @gentledecluttering

If nothing else seems to work, then it’s time to take a leap of faith and get rid of something — anything.

If you’re worried that you’ll regret giving it away, set aside some money and promise your subconscious that you’ll buy it back if the pain of letting it go is too much.

By doing so, you’ll set yourself up for success as you’re making it ridiculously easy to get started. The results will start to snowball from there.

5. Understand That It’s a Process

Credit: @andreajonesainsworth

Remember that letting go of an item, and decluttering in general, is not a one-off project — it’s a lifelong process.

You may not be able to say goodbye to your once cherished items today. Maybe they hold some sentimental value. Maybe you paid a lot for them. But the point remains, you have to trust the process and keep trying over time.

In other words, if you’re not ready to let go today, try again tomorrow or the next week or the month after that. And even once you’ve let go of excess from your wardrobe, don’t forget that you’ll have to do it again, preferably on a regular basis.

That’s the key to a sustainable minimalist wardrobe.


This just in: Our upcoming weekly newsletter!

Every Monday (starting in the near future) we’re going to be sending out a short email to our subscribers. It’s meant to ease the stress of a new week by reminding you how to take a more minimalist approach to life.

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