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Deciding What Goes during the 50 Things Challenge

Welcome to Week 3 of the 2009 Get Rid of 50 Things Challenge! (Missed the article with information on what the Challenge is and how to participate? See the Related Links below.) I've thrown myself into the Challenge feet first, and in this week's article, I want to share with you some of the stuff I've gotten rid of, both to give you a sense of how the Challenge is playing out for me and also to get you thinking about things that might be lurking in your own home or office that no longer need to be there.

Without further ado, here's a peek at the start of my list of 50 things.

Item: a 4-cd set on marketing and selling

Item: an unused 2006 daily planner

Item: an old pair of glasses

Item: a roll of double-sided carpet tape

Item: a black knit shirt with a gaping hole under the arm

Item: printed handouts from 5 years of teleclasses

What I'm realizing
As I go through the 50 Things Challenge, what strikes me is that the majority of the stuff I'm getting rid of simply doesn't mesh with my life as I'm living it now. Many of these things--the cd's, the planner, the handouts--represent ideas and intentions that just never played out for me: I intended to improve my marketing skills by listening to several hours of audio on the topic, to become the sort of organizer who brings product samples to show her clients, and to regularly browse through handouts from classes I'd taken.

I did none of those things--and I'm absolutely OK with that. By getting rid of the stuff related to those unrealized intentions, I also get to dump almost all of the guilt I feel around the intentions, which, in turn, lets me focus more solidly on the goals and plans I'm actually following through on.

As for the carpet tape, should I ever find myself in need of such a thing, I'd rather go out and buy it again than have to store it for many years in the meantime (as it loses adhesiveness all the while). And when it comes to the shirt, I can safely say that I've gone through each phase of this Shaker rhyme: "Use it up, wear it out, make it do, or do without." Phase 4 of that, here I come.

Onwards! What unneeded stuff can you let go of this week?

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