Hidden Hogs that Rob You of Space

As we put the holidays behind us and the new year greets us, most of us turn our thoughts to resolutions. And whether it’s a personal desire to do so or the realities of the economic climate that have forced our hands, this means a renewed commitment to contentment for many of us. Fortunately, though, there are a plethora of ways to fall in love with the space you already have and literally rediscover space you never even knew was there. How? It’s simple. Uncover the hidden “hogs” that are currently robbing you of space.


Homes can feel unnecessarily cramped when there’s not an adequate amount of storage space. But the term “adequate” is relative. Are your closets and shelves cram packed with what you need or what you have? If you’re tired of constantly shoving stuff into already tight quarters, consider basking in the beauty that space breath-ability can bring. Keep two complete sets of sheets for each bed in the house and donate the rest. Go through your clothing – closets and dressers – and purge any duplicates you may have. While there, keep an eye out for clothes that are out of date, no longer fit or you’ve simply forgotten about. Chances are you’d enjoy the extra space far more than those extra shirts or sweaters you probably forgot you even had anyway.

Next, tackle floor space. Wide open spaces are not only easy on the eyes, they’re far less accident prone, too. An added benefit, cleaning becomes a snap when you can breeze through an unobstructed room. So reclaim some of your indoor square footage by purging furniture. Do you really need that small table in the corner? Could you shrink your dining table’s everyday footprint by removing the optional leaf (and storing it in a closet or under the couch for use only when it’s truly necessary)? What about lamps? If a room is cluttered with lamps in an effort to bring in the light, consider downsizing to only one or two that are specifically made to brighten rooms. Whenever possible, opt for furniture that can do double or even triple duty. Furniture should not only be beautiful to look at and comfortable, but should accomplish tasks, too.

Shelves – wall-mounted or free-standing – are wonderful tools that help us take advantage of vertical space by getting stuff up and off the floor, but too many of us use them as a free license to hold on to extra stuff. Books and knick knacks are all too easy to keep, but how many of those don’t get looked at or picked up again until it’s time to dust? Instead, consider investing in your own free time (less time spent cleaning) and freeing up your indoor space by letting go of some of that superfluous stuff and letting someone else enjoy the pleasure you once had from the items.

Besides revealing the “extra” space in your home, making some of these tough decisions to let things go can also bring financial relief as well. Extra items can either be donated to charity in exchange for a charitable donation tax receipt to help increase your deductions come tax time. Items can also be sold on ebay or on Craig’s List for a bit of extra cash. More space in your home. Less time spent cleaning “stuff.” And more money in your pocket. That’s truly what I call a win-win-WIN!

Photo credit: fredthechicken

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Author Info

This post was written by Shannon M. Medisky. Shannon is an educator turned parent turned writer and focuses on sharing new and innovative ways to not just survive, but thrive on empty. Visit ThrivingOnEmpty.com to learn more. Her newest book The Complete Idiot's Guide to Stretching Your Dollar is available in bookstores now.

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