“It’s Not You . . . It’s Me.” Another Clutter Guilt Conversation Strategy (With Video)

It's Not You, It's Me. Another Clutter Guilt Conversation with video and script from ASlobComesClean.com


Another Clutter Guilt Conversation. I explained my thoughts on Clutter Guilt in yesterday’s post (that also has a video!!).

My first choice is to not worry about the guilt, but sometimes that isn’t possible. If you’re paralyzed, and can’t get rid of things because of the guilt, you might try one of the conversations I’m sharing this week!


(Go here if you can’t see the video!)

The It’s Not You, It’s Me Approach (the script)

GUILTEE: Hey, I need to get rid of that coffee table you gave me.


GUILTEE: Oh, I just don’t have a place for it in my living room anymore. And it doesn’t match the new furniture anyway.

GUILTER: But I got that when I was in college!

GUILTEE: I know. And I loved getting to use it, but I don’t have space for it anymore.

GUILTER: I can’t believe you don’t want that coffee table. I didn’t eat out for three months so I could save up to buy that.

GUILTEE: Oh, it’s a beautiful coffee table, and it served me well for such a long time. But you know how I am. I tend to keep stuff for way longer than I should and I’ve realized that’s a big part of my problem. It’s one of the reasons I have such a hard time keeping my house under control. Thanks so much for giving it to me to use for all those years. That was so nice of you.

GUILTER: So you’ll keep it?

GUILTEE: (crossing eyes) No. I can’t. Do you want it back or should I donate it? I mean, it IS such a nice coffee table . . .

GUILTER: Well, I don’t need it, but you . . .

GUILTEE: (Interrupting) OK then. I’ll donate it. Thanks so much! I just wanted to check with you because I was so grateful you let me use it and didn’t want to donate it without asking you if you wanted it back! Oh, I am so sorry, I have to go.

GUILTER: Hello?? Hello?


Approaches to Clutter Guilt – (Sample Conversations and Videos)

The "Playing Dumb" Approach - A Sample Clutter Guilt Conversation (with script and video) from Nony of ASlobComesClean.com

Clutter Guilt is a real thing. I get questions about it. I did a podcast on the subject last week, and then had this idea for a series of videos.

For my own Clutter Guilt situations, I have the unique advantage of having a blog about decluttering, which means most people in my life (most, not all) KNOW I can’t handle stuff and understand when I have to get rid of things.

Most of them understood pre-blog, anyway.

But honestly, through the past five years of decluttering like a crazy woman, I’ve gained enough Decluttering Momentum that I no longer worry about offending the person who unloaded their own clutter on me. If they don’t want it in their home, I feel no obligation to keep it in mine.

I know. Sometimes it isn’t that simple.

There are times when you can feel obligated to offer the clutter/stuff/junk back to the giver before donating. I’m sharing a few approaches to these conversations this week.

(And mostly, I’m having fun.)

(Click here if you can’t see the video!)


Clutter Guilt Script – The “Playing Dumb” Approach


Guilter: (Answers door.) Well, hello!! How are y . . . What’s that? (looking down)

Guiltee: It’s those Christmas decorations you love so much! I kept one for memory’s sake (I hope that’s okay!!) but I thought I’d give them back to you since I don’t need them anymore and we just don’t have the space to store them!

Guilter: No, when I got new ones I gave those to you. They’re very special to me.

Guiltee: (Very serious.) I know. That’s why I’m bringing them back to you! (continue nodding seriously while attempting to place the box inside his/her house.)

Guilter: I don’t want them.

Guiltee: (Confused) I thought you said they were really special? Oh, I must have misunderstood. I don’t mind at all dropping them by Goodwill.

Guilter: You’re going to DONATE them?

Guiltee: (Confused) Of course! I don’t have the room, and you don’t want them. What else would I do with them? I wouldn’t throw them away!! I mean, these are very nice Christmas decorations!!

Guilter: But I got those at a garage sale in a very fancy neighborhood when I was pregnant with you.

Guiltee: Oh, so you do want them?(starts putting the box down)

Guilter: No, I don’t want them!

Guiltee: OK great! Then I’ll take care of everything! There’s a place I can drop them off on my way to pick up the kids from school.

Guilter: Bu. . .wha . .

Guiltee: Oh, I gotta go! See ya later!!


Feel free to memorize and use!!


Clutter Busting Concept: Replace. Don’t Just Shove the New Ones in With the Old Ones

Clutter Busting Concept: Replace. Don't Just Shove In With the Old Stuff at ASlobComesClean.com

I recently put the One In One Out Rule into action.

A year or so ago, my mom gave us a small set of glass storage containers. I’m in love with those things.

A while back, Costco put a similar set on sale with their monthly coupons. I was excited to get it, but by the time I got to my closest store, they were all gone. The same set (an affiliate link)was more expensive on Amazon, so I waited.

This month, the deal was back!

As I put the box into our cart, I warned Hubby  that we weren’t getting new storage containers. We were replacing our old storage containers.

There’s a difference.

At least there’s a difference for me.

And for him.

Once upon a time, when we were dating, he cooked for me. He sent me home with leftovers packed in an orange “sunburst” Tupperware container. I thought I was demonstrating awesome Future Wife Material Characteristics when I returned a NEW, cooler Tupperware container of the same size. (I was a Tupperware Lady at the time. Really.)

He was thankful, but he wanted the orange one back, too.

I was irritated, which is kind of funny considering my own issues caused by a lack of understanding of the one-in-one-out concept and all the problems that would cause in our future home.

But now we’ve both learned that we can’t just get new stuff. We have to replace old stuff with new stuff.

Otherwise, we end up with too much stuff.

Replacement is how it works in non-slob homes.

When you “get” and don’t “replace” . . . storage container cabinets become avalanche cabinets.

Or, as my good friend calls them . . . crapalanches. (TM – Cliff Bowen.)

Here’s how it went:

Replacing Food Storage Containers at ASlobComesClean.com

Right. It was a disaster of randomness before.

Yes. There are things (that I know are there) shoved in the back of that after picture.

Mmm-hmmm. There are half-drunk water bottles in the before photo. (Post about that coming right up.)

You betcha. I do store containers with the lids on. Here’s why.


This “project” took all of about five minutes. Five fun minutes because I was admiring my new stuff. It was EASIER to put them away because I pulled out the old stuff first. I didn’t have to find a place to shove them.


What have you decluttered lately? Take a picture and then go enter this giveaway on my post from yesterday! (It’s for a $500 Home Depot giftcard!!! For real!!!)




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