How photographing your clutter makes it easier to let go

Photographing memorabilia is a great way to keep a memory alive, yet let it go. See why this works and start decluttering!

According to consumer psychologists in CNN’s article The life-changing science of photographing your clutter

"In studies conducted online and in person, we found that participants reported that they would experience less identity loss from donating a cherished item if they had photographed it or preserved the memory of it some other way.”

What does this mean for you? Based on studies from the Journal of Marketing, if you photograph an item that is being kept for sentimental reasons, it’s much more likely that you’ll be able to donate the item.  Oftentimes our reasons for keeping an item is that it helps us to recall a memory that we fear we might lose forever if the physical trigger is gone.  So, an added benefit to the space you’ll clear, is that you’re also lessening your sense of identity loss.


I’ve helped clients to do this many times.  A client of mine was moving and had no choice but to drastically reduce his possession count.  It was actually his idea for me to photograph dozens of pieces of memorabilia as he dropped them into the trash or the donation box.  Even I was shocked at what he was able to let go!  Once photographed, I watched him dump sports awards from the 1970s, presidential inauguration invites, heartfelt letters, event tickets, and more.  Pictured here is one of his camp trophies.

This is a fascinating read that could prove to be immediately helpful.  Watch the accompanying video too.

Click to read The life-changing science of photographing your clutter.

Have a thing or ten that you’ll be able to let go of once photographed? Please share in the comments!

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Office Organizing Expert Kacy Paide loves to do what most people hate: organize offices & paper.

She works with folks who are desperate for a more functional, more beautiful, more inspiring office. Kacy has been a Professional Organizer since 2001 and has worked with over 500 clients. Call her crazy, but she loves a good mess and wants to fix yours. Learn her time-tested solutions in her eBook, The Inspired Office: Organize Your Life One Paper at a Time. Based in Silver Spring, MD, Kacy is nationally available for consulting & speaking.