Downsizing – The Art And Challenge Of Letting Go

Downsizing – The Art And Challenge Of Letting Go

Posted on: January 31st, 2018 by Open Space Organizing

Downsizing is about changing your space to suit your current needs and is a rite of passage for many. It can be done in place, or by moving to a new residence and a key element in the process is letting go of the past to embrace the future. The age and time when downsizing occurs varies widely and depends on individual needs and circumstances.

Common Reasons to Downsize Include:
  • Saving money (smaller space equals smaller mortgage)
  • Decreasing maintenance and upkeep
  • Adopting a new lifestyle or adjusting to new health needs
  • Types of Downsizing Include:
  • Minimalism/Simplifying (with or without moving)
  • EmptyNest/Repurposing (with or without moving)

Downsizing is beneficial as it creates an opportunity to take a fresh look at your space and it breathes new energy and new purpose into your space and your life, whether you are downsizing in place or moving. As the furniture and clutter shifts and is removed there is an opening for new beginnings.

One of the greatest challenges to downsizing is going through belongings and deciding what to keep or let go. In any life transition there can be sadness, fear, and the feeling of loss as the adjustment to change occurs. Hard decisions are necessary concerning what to keep and what to donate, recycle or gift to family and friends.

It is best to make plans and goals for your space and new needs and consider which items will fit those needs. Start the process as early as you can and work in phases, systematically going through rooms for an initial sweep, and then returning for a second look, rather than attempts to make all the decisions at once. This will help you manage the process in steps and feel less overwhelmed by the size of the task.

Expect and prepare yourself that letting go of items can be emotional. Belongings are a part of a family’s history and often tell a story of how a family lived and grew. Experience, feel and discuss these emotions with those close to you and give yourself permission to feel whatever you are feeling, and permission to move forward. Keep yourself focused on what lies ahead and the benefits of the changes being made.

Five Tips to Help You Navigate Downsizing;

Start the process as early as possible

Work in phases

Focus on moving forward and staying present focused on your new lifestyle needs

Look at the process as a chance to grow

Get help and support as needed


Open Space Organizing is happy to help with planning, purging, packing and unpacking for your transition. Take advantage of our free assessment!

Call 630-453-2582

Downsizing, Tiny House