Around New Years a friend posted on a bulletin board an idea--instead of making resolutions (which most of us break) pick a word to focus on for the year. I thought this was a terrific idea and chose my word--minimalism. My goal: try and buy less, consume less, use up things we have and get rid of things we aren't using. So far I'm doing well (partially thanks to laundry strike!), I sold 6 items on Ebay already and getting ready to list more, I have two bags of stuff to take to the Goodwill, and we threw out a number of things that for whatever reason weren't good enough for either. I feel better already just getting rid of those things! I hope to continue this throughout the year.
When we made the decision to move, we also decided to move in to a smaller home. Less maintenance and less room to accumulate "stuff and things". I wanted to move gradually, cleaning out room by room. We did do that to a certain extent, but due to several unexpected changes, it didn't go quite as we expected, and we actually moved in to the new house sooner than planned. It has left us some messes that we aren't thrilled with, and hopefully by the end of the year the bulk of that will be resolved.
I came across a rather novel idea on a blog that intrigued me--and at the moment it seems a bit extreme for me, but for some people it might be a great way to reduce not only their personal possessions, but their stress level.