5 Ways to Lighten Your Load

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This summer has been full of travel, with everything we needed tucked neatly into a carry on sized suitcase. It's been a great reminder that when you're surrounded by people you love and beautiful places, you don't need that much stuff. Now that we're home, we want to bring some of that freedom with us so we're lightening the load.

After all that travel, home feels like its just full of stuff so we're embracing some of that easy breezy summer travel attitude at home by asking ourselves some key questions:

1. Do You Need the Book? We started reading books on the kindle for iPhone and it's changing our whole approach to book buying. Not only are we not accruing physical books, but when a great book is recommended to us, we can download it immediately--very satisfying. Of course that doesn't help us with the books we've already got. But to thin them out we consider: if we had to move, would we bring them? And: in 10 years will I remember this book? If it's a yes then it's worth it. If no, it gets donated to a friend or a library.

2. Do You Love It? It's easy to feel you ought to hang onto something, but the real question is, do you love the thing, does it make you feel good, or do you use it? Does it bring something positive to your life?

3. Do You Wear It?. Now that summer is winding to a close, it's easy to see what we've been wearing all the time and what has remained untouched. There are certain dresses and skirts that we've simply outgrown. Maybe last year they were our go-to, but it's ok to let them go if it's been a couple of summers and they're still on the hanger. This is a great time to take stock as fall is upon us.

4. Does It Help You Work? With a new season, we need to clean out our desk and lighten the piles that have accumulated. Following these 4 steps for decluttering your desk we're starting with the piles and asking ourselves what is really necessary on the desktop for working? Are their things pinned to the bulletin board that are old and outdated?

5. Would You Pack It? If you were leaving on a trip tomorrow, what would you take with you? What do you presently use? Not last year or two months ago, but right now? This helps keep us current with what we actually need.

Image: Laure Joliet)