Thursday, November 3, 2011

Rags A-plenty

How many rags does one person need? By one person I mean one household because it's usually one main person that does the cleaning. As I clean out my closets and kitchen drawers I'm not surprised by the number of rags or empty bags I'm finding. I find it easier to turn something into a cleaning rag than to throw it out and I'm always thinking I will find another use for those empty bags I bring home from shopping trips.

Well, the answer to the question above is easy when you think about it. You can keep as many rags (and bags) as you have designated space for, and that should be about the size of a small drawer. So as I'm folding and putting my kitchen rags away, and the drawer starts to fill up, that answer is becoming more and more obvious. Heck, I can even imagine a day that I only fill half of my drawer with rags!

So this has me thinking about how some of us get in the habit of holding on to excess, and somehow we keep adding to it, "stuffing" it so to speak, like we stuff rags into a kitchen drawer, even when we start to run out of space. I know it could have something to do with feeling secure, but how are rags helping to make me feel more secure.....obviously it's not the rags but what the rags represent. The rags and all of the other stuff represents the fear of not having enough, not getting enough, or running out. It's all the same feeling, the felling, the fear of "lack".

For quite a while now I've been using my awareness of this feeling and fear of "lack" as it relates to my relationship with food. This feeling of lack is what has, in the past, compelled me to take "free food", or take more food than I needed, wanted or could use (eat). The feeling as if were going to be my last chance to get something before it would be gone forever! How many times do you find yourself taking extra food or servings at a work pot luck, party or buffet...and those "free samples"? Lots of times we eat stuff we don't want, or weren't even thinking about because we might not get the chance again, and God forbid it gets thrown away.

Reminding myself I can have whatever I want whenever I want it, when it comes to food is another way to retrain how I think....and it's working! So many times I walk away with no temptation, and even throwing away extra food has become liberating! The feeling of being in charge and having the power is fun! This is my mantra....."I have enough, I have more than enough, and there's enough for everybody....there's enough for everybody...."

I'm not going to run out of kitchen rags, or food, and if I did what's the worst thing that could happen? I'll get more, there's plenty where that stuff comes from!

PS this is not a picture of my rags btw!


Maribel said...

I have the same issues, but more so with guilt to throw something out. The way I've dealt with it is to not buy. Or if I do buy, I usually get rid of something. In other words, I'm more discriminating of what I'll buy. Kind of like your sister with the more expensive blouse? That's a very European way of thinking. Very progressive.

The Swiss do the same thing, they buy very few, but very good quality and classic clothes that will last. We're used to cheap, "disposable" clothes. I know I've changed that habit and I like it much better.

Remember this morning how you were saying you were torn on how to get rid of stuff? Here's the logic I use for that. If it's something I paid a lot of $$ for, I feel guilty because, well it was expensive! But the way I see it is, it's taking space, I pay for that space. Giving it away clears my mind because clutter, well clutters my mind and that right there is worth every penny I have just "lost" over the item. Does that make sense?

Anyhow, you just reminded me, I need to go through my rag drawer too. LOL.

Tracy Reifkind said...


I'm getting a lot of good insight into what is really going on with me....and I'm over the $$ value of stuff.

My resistence comes with things I've collected through the years that I see are "one of a kind". Whether it's a peice of art work, a vintage collectible, or a "one of a kind" deal I got on something I once valued for it's aesthetics or collectibility. The memorie of digging through a box at a garage sale and finding something I thought was a treasure.

I couldn't bat an eyelash at giving away expensive designers clothes or brand new stuff or even furniture, those things have little hold on me.

I'm going to be writing about what I've discovered in how you describe physically clearing clutter also "clears cluuter from the mind"

I learned a long time ago the true meaning of value. Back in my days of selling at the flea market I would always say that something is only worth what someone will pay for it! And most people don't want to pay much!

I'm not torn about getting rid of my stuff, I'm torn about HOW to get rid of it!

Diana said...

People are made to be loved and things are made to be used. The confusion in this world is that people are used and things are loved!

Kudos to you for helping to change this unfortunate phenomenon!

Tracy Reifkind said...


As true as it may be that we use our friends and love our things, it's also sad that phrases like that exist :(