Getting the confidence to downsize

Lesson 2: Free online downsizing course

As we get on in life, and experience ups and downs along the way, a loss of confidence is common.

A lack of confidence, or wavering in decision making, can be particularly apparent when it comes to downsizing.

Whether it’s downsizing for a move or downsizing for ageing in place.

People can lose confidence of knowing where to start or even whether it’s possible for them to downsize a lifetime of accumulations.

Is downsizing possible?

I am a firm believer that, regardless of the circumstances, downsizing is always possible.

The outcome may look different from person to person, but we have helped people cull and organise accumulated possessions from all types of homes.

Sometimes people feel so stuck in their current circumstances that they can’t see the light at the end of the tunnel.

Downsizing can be particularly difficult when facing physical or mental health challenges.

But I assure you that it has a far greater success rate than some would believe.

It’s often a matter of getting the right sequencing and/or getting a bit of support to help you get to the finish line.

Downsizing as a project

At its core, downsizing is a large project.

This is usually biggest project people will ever undertake in their personal life, involving the manual handling of thousands of household objects.

Like any large project, different people will approach it differently and it can be hard to get started and keep motivated.

Give yourself grace throughout the process.When people come to a downsizing project, often people have experienced different “bumps along the road”.

Sometimes people have physical health challenges, mental health challenges or are experiencing grief.

These are all good reasons to be gentle on yourself.

Rome wasn’t built in a day.

Start with a realistic goal in mind

The minimum time period that we recommend for a whole home downsizing project is three months.

Some people will take a year or more to downsize their home.

And that is fine.

Downsizing is rarely an emergency.

Even if someone needs to move to a new home, there are workarounds such as the use of storage.

Also, “downsized” will look different to different people, depending on the circumstances of the home and its inhabitants.

Identifying small goals to start with (even if it just means dealing with just one shelf) is helpful, as is keeping the overall goal realistic.

One goal might be to deal with the garage or spare room contents, create a calm master bedroom, or perhaps go through some of the books that have accumulated over the years.

If you can avoid jumping from space to space within the home and start with a single achievable goal in mind, the overall project can feel a little less daunting.

Be encouraged by the successes of others

People downsize all the time.

Though it can be an emotionally and physically demanding process, it is possible for anyone get to the finish line.

Whether you do it alone or get help and support from different sources.

There are “smart” ways to make your downsizing project a little easier.

My hope is that through the lessons in this online downsizing course, you can apply the lessons learned from our work at Downsizing with Care to save yourself unnecessary stress during your downsize.

Next lesson: How to get started and keep motivated

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