This weekend I was thrilled to help my hubby tidy his music/writing/study room.
For one thing, I knew how much he wanted to free up space so he can easily create fun projects.
For another, I enjoy watching people get rid of excess stuff. A lot. I also am pretty good at organizing, but I’m no clean freak.
We talked first about what he wanted to do in the room: listen to, practice, write, and record music; study, and store his instruments and books.
Backstory: when we first married, his “music room” was our dining room. I wasn’t thrilled about that. Ever since he has been really good about trying to confine his stuff to one room.
While I appreciate his thoughtfulness, there’s a problem with that: everything of his except toiletries and clothes pretty much ends up in one room. I’ve told him more than once that doesn’t need to be the case.
It no longer is.
So I have this bad habit of going to garage sales, second hand shops and the like. I’m thrifty that way, and I like decorating with unique finds. I periodically purge. About once a quarter the house feels too full and I begin culling. It feels great.
Recently I cleared one side of a long closet in my writing room, the kind of closet that you can’t really hang a clothes bar in so yay, space! (If there were room for clothes it would have been quickly claimed by moi, believe you me.)
I had also created space in the hall closet.
The big clear began with carrying everything out of his room. Then we discussed what furniture would stay, what could go. I offered to paint his room but he said no, not just now. In my head I’m choosing colors. 🤓
He donated this cool old TV set and clock to the living room, which gladly accepted:
We sorted his bookshelves and got rid of approximately 50 books. I put them in the milk crates I’ve been storing in the garage for a decade and decided I would quit trying to find something to do with them and donate them along with the books.
Then there were the cd’s that I was surprised he was cool with storing in the garage.
The man has so much musical equipment. His 4 and 8 track recorders found new homes upstairs. An ancient practice amp was let go of. I’m so proud.
Was I ever thrilled when we found his personal scissors that I bought for him and even put his name on. I knew he thought I’d borrowed them again and hadn’t returned them. Ha! Did not!
We found borrowed items, Christmas wrap, gifts it was time to let go of, candy.
Thankfully episodes of The Office entertained us as we plowed through piles of papers.
There was only so much I could do to help, because most of the decisions were his to make. I did make clear that he could get rid of almost anything I had given him in the name of freeing up space.
I did gain a few things: a shirt he didn’t want, some cd’s I don’t have uploaded to my computer, and his appreciation.
At some point we talked about only putting back into that room the things he will regularly use. I would, I said, find space for whatever else he wanted to keep.
It was with a grateful heart I loaded my vehicle with the crates and dumped bags of trash into the garbage can. (Barry is on a writing deadline so I offered to finish up.)
Emptying the room revealed things we need to buy: a case for his keyboard and a set of shelves for his ever-growing collection of lp’s. That’s important info for creating and protecting your inspiration.
After he finished practicing bass the evening of the clean up, I asked him how it felt to play in there. Needless to say, he loved it.
My husband is a multi talented man, much more than he gives himself credit for. I am thrilled he now has a clear space he’s happy to create in. I’m pleased to have helped.
I tell this story to remind us all to literally make space for our creativity by mentally and physically lightening our lives. Get rid of what you don’t need.
Then again, besides books and clothing, I’m a minimalist. Works for me.