If you’ve been following along, I have committed to 100 Days of Letting Go of Past Shite, the 6th 100 day project I’ve done. I’m currently around day 30 (this year allowing the project to stop and start as necessary). And it occurred to me to share a tactic I developed a long time ago that helps me to process my giveaways.

The Empty Box Method for Releasing Unwanted Stuff on Shalavee.comBack in 2005, I was forced to shut my antiques and gifts shop called Bally Eden down. The Great Recession of 2007 had already begun and on the coldest day in January of 2005, we moved everything from the shop into my garage. There were boxes and furniture pieces piled to the ceiling. Very overwhelming. I decided to have a porch sale and began to sort stuff out into 50 cent and dollar boxes. And I stumbled upon my own theory/method for cleaning out stuff called The Empty Box method.

Essentially, you need an empty space, be that a box or a tabletop to move stuff into. Otherwise, you are moving stuff from one place to another with one foot nailed down. (I suppose a therapist session could also be considered an empty box you can bring things to too.) However, and wherever, the space needs to be designated and empty.

The Empty Box Method for Releasing Unwanted Stuff on Shalavee.comI’ve been gathering things to give away daily which end up somewhere on a counter or in a corner. But this past weekend, I had cleared a tabletop in the garage and I moved all the little piles and boxes there and repacked them, took a picture for Instagram where all my #100daysoflettinggoofpastshite are recorded, and then hauled them off with my recycling too.The Empty Box Method for Releasing Unwanted Stuff on Shalavee.com

The trick is to develop a system for this purging madness and that’s what the Empty Box becomes. And the easier that system works, the more stuff leaves. The idea is to do this for long enough until the purging magic happens. That moment when you start to realize that your stuff doesn’t define you and that you can pick and choose what does. 

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