How did we get to this place? So overwhelmed with junk that it's hard to even begin to throw it away. Well, American culture. But worrying about cause doesn't help us overcome the anxiety - think about that when you have enough room to sit and meditate. For now, start small. When I am feeling the need to purge but can't figure out where to begin, I turn to my standby favorites. I can ALWAYS find something to throw away in these categories:
1. Clothing. From stretched out socks to a shirt you love but never wear, there is at least one (more likely 20) thing in your closet that can leave the house. Today.
2. Books. I know, I know, you are a BOOK LOVER. These are not mere possessions, they are like members of the family. But just as you wouldn't invite that loud drunken uncle to move in with you, there are surely members of your bookcase family that are not smart, not amusing, and not likely to improve your life. Also, the library. Buck up and recognize that you don't have to own every single book you have ever read.
3. Bathroom ephemera. Nothing collects junk like a cabinet under the sink. Old medication, melted cough drops, fancy soap that smells too flowery; there is no end to the stuff that you can purge from the bathroom. If you, like everyone else, are fond of picking up the tiny toiletries provided in hotels, do yourself and someone else a favor and donate them to your local food bank or pantry. People who can't afford food can't afford shampoo, either. They will be happy to use those sample-sized soaps and lotions. You do not need them.
Go forth and purge! Just get rid of five things if you can't do the whole room/closet/bookcase. From tiny seeds grow mighty oaks - and from tiny clear-outs grow huge bags of junk you will Never Have To Deal With Again.