Let’s start out with the The Rube Goldberg Conclusion: If it’s Broken, Toss It. But, let’s stop at that point because we don’t want to run right out and buy something new to replace something unneeded in the first place. Let’s just concentrate on the part about broken things being tossed.
Here’s the deal: if you’re wearing ripped pants, take them off right now. This very minute, remove them from your body. Unless you’re in public, then wait until you get home.
Once home, pull off those pants and see if the tear is something that can be sewn. Then be honest with yourself about whether you will repair it. If the answer is “No, I’ll just keep wearing them with a long tunic that hides the tear”, then throw out those pants. Same for any of your other torn, stained, frayed clothes. Give them the boot – and add a boot (and its mate) if the boots too, are in disrepair.
And before we move on to why, do the same with your broken items. Cracked, snapped, chipped, splintered and broken? Motor burned out, handle missing? Toss it.
I don’t know what makes us keep clothes that are threadbare, wearing them in a way that hides the tear. Or even worse, what makes us keep torn articles of clothing in our closets and never wear them.
What are we thinking when we keep using broken cups that are broken or chipped? That can be a physical hazard. Hey, some of us do worse and leave the chipped cup in the cabinet and never use it.
Wait, I know you’re thinking about “Chip” from “Beauty and The Beast”, but stop that. He’s not real, he’s animated. And it’s a fairy tale.
So basically, don’t keep damaged items anymore.
- You Deserve Better
I don’t mean “deserve” in terms of what is owed you, but more what you owe to yourself. You owe it to yourself to stop wearing stained, ripped clothes. It can’t possibly make you feel good to wear worn out items.
What I hear the most from our clients is that “these are my ‘fat’ clothes and I don’t want to buy anything new because I’m working on losing weight and being in a smaller size”. I get it but it’s still not good to see ourselves in frayed clothes. It tells us we’re not worth more than that awful rip in our clothing. And in making us feel unworthy, it undermines our goal. We don’t feel powerful. We don’t feel like a conqueror. We don’t feel like we’ll lose that weight. We feel ineffective and defective.
Looking at yourself with “broken” clothes does not a healthy, power-filled attitude bring.
- Feng Shui Says…
I know, I know, you’re so over Feng Shui. But let’s look at this one point because if you believe in energy, negative or positive, I think you’ll get the gist. Keeping things that are broken opens us up to holding onto negative vibes. It brings unwanted situations into our lives. It tells us we, ourselves, are broken and so things will keep happening to “break” us.
In another vein, Feng Shui says that hanging onto broken things can unconsciously tell us we’re broke, as in dirt poor. We believe that our lives are lacking and we go out into the world viewing everything we do with an attitude of scarcity. This fear can sometimes lead us to very different scenarios:
- We will be driven by our fear and overspend, thus creating the very situation we are trying to avoid. And it becomes a cycle. I can’t afford to, but I want to.
- The fear will hold us back from enjoying life because “we can’t afford to” buy an item we truly enjoy or perhaps we won’t do something fun. That’s no way to live life. Feeling whole and well and viewing our life through a lens of plentitude is much healthier.
- If It Doesn’t Work, There’s No Need to Keep It
This is a simple premise, right? Not for a lot of us. Some of us hold onto broken things like a non-working sewing machine with the notion that “I’ll get it fixed someday.” And when asked how long it’s been in this shape, we sheepishly reply, “10 years”.
I’ve seen broken TVs, blenders, cheese graters and even a manual can opener. Useless stuff.
We need to be honest with ourselves. It’s not practical and we won’t (in some cases, can’t) fix it and there’s no need for it to sit around taking up useful space.
I’m pretty sure we don’t need more than these three reasons to help us decide not to keep anything that’s defective. Let’s be that person who views ourself and our home as significant, precious and whole.