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!