Guest post from Crystal of Serving Joyfully
But it was a gift.
This simple statement is one of the biggest pitfalls I have when it comes to clutter in my home. I know this might sound ungrateful, but I can’t tell you how many things we’ve been given over the years that are collecting dust or stored in a closet. Most of these items are things that we “couldn’t get rid of” because someone gave it to us.
After seven years of this, the situation reached a breaking point. Here is how I decided to deal with it:
I remind myself that it’s my house and my family has to live here.
I really hate to hurt or offend anyone. However, at the end of the day, this is my family’s home and we need to be comfortable here. For my husband, a big part of a peaceful home is an uncluttered home. I cannot sacrifice a peaceful home for my family at the fear of offending someone.
I assume someone else can get use out of the items.
More than likely, even if you don’t want it or can’t use it, someone else does and can. As I was thinking about this, it occurred to me that if I purchase something, I would prefer for it to be passed on to someone who can use it rather than stuffed away in a closet. At least then, someone will be getting some use out of it. I can only hope that some of my family feels this same way, or can at least see the benefit of it.
I encourage unique gift ideas.
I am a minimalist at heart. My husband is getting there. We don’t need or want a lot of stuff in our home. Because of this, we have tried to put some boundaries in place for our families regarding gift giving — namely limits for grandparents who like to go overboard. We also encourage experience gifts and useful gifts rather than trinkets or toys that will just add clutter to our home.
The bottom line for me is this: If I purchase a gift for someone, I want it to be a benefit to him or her. It might sadden me a bit to know that my choice wasn’t spot on, but it would bother me even more to know that the gift I had purchased for their good was actually causing them stress instead.
How do you deal with gifted items you don’t want or need?
Crystal Brothers is a daughter of the King, wife to a forest ranger, and full-time mommy to two rambunctious little boys. She blogs at Serving Joyfully — a blog dedicated to encouraging and equipping women to serve God and their families.
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