Decluttering your home is never an easy task, especially when you regret spending money.
An expensive dress with the tags still attached, a fancy blender that never gets used, or an exercise bike that’s collecting dust—we all know how it feels to spend too much on a regrettable purchase.
Even when it’s clear that these items add no value to our lives, we still can’t let go. We feel too guilty about money that we’ve wasted so instead of decluttering, we close our closet doors and try to pretend that our stuff doesn’t exist.
Or at least, this was how I handled my clutter for years! I didn’t want to face my mistakes … until I realised that the cost of hanging on was worse than the pain of letting go.
Keeping Expensive Clutter Has A Price
Let’s take a look at this familiar scenario:
You’re decluttering and you come across something expensive. You consider letting go … but then a voice in your head says, “But you paid so much for that!” A flood of emotion washes over you and you put the item back in its place.
It’s almost as if holding on validates the purchase. If I still own it, then it’s not a waste, right?
Here’s the hard truth—if you own something you never use then your money was wasted the minute you left the shop.
And to make things worse, it’s not just the original purchase price. The things in your home have ongoing costs to consider. You continue to invest time, energy and money on things like cleaning, maintenance and storage.
On top of that, there’s also a mental cost. How much is your peace of mind worth?
It turns out keeping expensive clutter has a price. The longer you hang on, the more you have to pay.
“How Do I Recover My Money?”
When faced with the ongoing cost of clutter, most people warm to the idea of letting go … but they want to recover some of their money.
They decide to sell their stuff and this is where they get stuck.
Selling secondhand goods requires considerable time and energy. It often involves taking photos, creating online listings, answering enquiries and then arranging delivery.
It’s a lot of work and the returns can be disappointing. Obviously, it depends on what you’re selling but most of the time, you’ll be lucky to get back a fraction of the original price.
All this means that people either don’t have time to sell their goods or if they do, they still have to deal with the pain of letting go. They realise that they aren’t going to come anywhere close to recovering their money and that stings.
If this has happened to you, then here is my advice: give yourself the gift of letting go.
Think of it this way—how would you feel if all your clutter suddenly disappeared?
My guess is pretty good, like a weight lifting off your shoulders.
Yes, you’d technically still be losing money but think about all the other ways you spend a little extra in order to feel better.
- Do you ever get your hair or nails done?
- Eat takeaway meals so you don’t have to cook?
- Go on vacation or travel for pleasure?
These things are arguably a “waste” of money but most of us indulge occasionally because it feels good. We’re willing to spend on certain luxuries in order to take better care of ourselves.
The same can be said for decluttering. If it improves your quality of life, isn’t it worth doing?
It’s Not Wasted Money If You Learn From Your Mistakes
Finally, if regret about money is still holding you back from decluttering, I encourage you to think of it all as an educational expense.
Take a few minutes to think about what went wrong and what you can learn from the experience. Yes—it’s a painful mistake, but don’t live in the past. Instead, learn from what happened and make better decisions moving forward.
If you need help with this, one of these posts might help you:
- 4 Reasons Why You Can’t Stop Shopping + What To Do About It
- How to Stop Buying Clothes You Never Wear
- 6 Tips on How to Stop Mindless Shopping
More Decluttering Tips and Resources
Want to learn more about decluttering? Then download Mindful Decluttering, a free guide and workbook that will help you overcome your biggest challenges. Get your copy using the form below.
More decluttering articles and ideas:
- 4 Thoughtful Questions to Ask When Decluttering
- 10 Simple Decluttering Tips For When You Feel Stuck
- Decluttering: How to Decide What to Keep?
What decluttering tips do you have for someone who regrets spending money? Did you find these tips helpful? Let us know in the comments! x