Do you keep things that might spark future joy?

Travelling_woman_David_Jubert_flickr

The Life-Changing Magic of Tidying Up has been on my must-read list for a while. In it, Marie Kondo says we should ask ourselves a single question when deciding what to keep:

Does this spark joy?

As we prepare the nursery for the baby’s arrival, I’ve been itching for another big spring cleaning. The nursery was our dining room, and we use it to store stuff that doesn’t fit in our tiny, 1920s closets. In the room, we have a big storage cabinet, two bookcases, a dresser, and a new dresser/changing table for the baby. And we just added a crib!

These pieces of furniture hold all kinds of things, from cleaning products to ski gear to liquor cabinet to family heirlooms passed down from grandparents and great grandparents (think quilts and silver… things we won’t exactly put to use but tie us to generations past).

So, as I’m trying to think about how to clear out space in that room, my question to YOU is this:

What do you do with things that you think might spark future joy?

For me, the family heirlooms fall into this category. Right now, they’re sitting in cabinets and drawers gathering dust. But if we one day have a bigger home, perhaps we’ll display my great grandmother’s handmade quilt on a wall in a guest room. Or maybe we’ll put out the silver coffee and tea serving set from my grandparents in our dining room.

These are the things I struggle most with.

I don’t want to store things that I may never use, or even take out of the cabinet. That doesn’t bring me joy. It feels like a burden.

But it seems rash to make such a permanent decision based on our current situation. I see our small apartment as a temporary stop before we eventually have a larger home, or at least a home with more storage. And, later on down the road, I don’t want to regret a choice I’ve made simply because it was best for me at this particular stage of my life. As a result, I feel like I should keep these things for my future self, for the future joy they might spark. But the minimalist in me struggles with that conclusion.

I’d love to hear your thoughts. Do you hold onto things that you think you might want someday in the future, even if doing so feels like a burden right now?

(Photo credit: David Jubert, Flickr)

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