Now that I'm older, I realize that every "thing" you own needs to be stored, cleaned, fixed, sorted, moved and otherwise taken care of. Even more so if you actually USE the thing. If I can't use something, it gets sold on Ebay, donated or thrown away... not put into storage "just in case" I need it.
The Dreaded Sewing Projects
Before I got married, I had dozens of unfinished sewing projects in storage. They were all nicely labeled and stuffed into individual grocery bags, which were then put into garbage bags for easier moving. I was going to finish them... sometime. I was going to make them a priority and finish them all, one by one. Maybe one a week, or even one per month.
But then a year went by, and two and three, until I found projects that I had completely forgotten about. The sheer amount of unfinished projects was overwhelming. I felt bad because I had promised to myself that I would finish the projects, and I had broke my promise. And there they were, reminding me of my broken promise.
Finally, I decided to cut my losses and throw away all of my projects. I didn't look through the trash bags and save out my favorite ones- I just threw them all. When they were gone, I felt so good. It was like being forgiven of sins or something. I felt free of the guilt and procrastination that the sewing projects had caused.
Are you giving up a large part of your mental real estate to a bunch of "stuff"? I challenge you to clean out your closets, kitchen cupboards, pantry, hobby room, garage, and every other place where stuff accumulates. Don't throw away things that you actually use, but if you haven't used it in a long time, what makes you think you will use it again? Make three piles; one save, one donate or sell, and the other trash. DON'T just pick toss or donate a few things and then put all of your stuff back into storage. Don't consolidate your stuff and just shuffle it around, moving it from place to place. If you don't use it, refuse it!
Go And Hoard No More
If you're afraid, like I was, of "throwing out good stuff", here is a simple solution: don't buy or accept stuff that you don't need. Then you will never have to throw it away.
Once you've cleaned out, the hard part is facing the next garage sale. Or shopping mall, or auction or whatever caused you to accumulate stuff in the first place. It's okay to pass up a deal. It's okay to let someone else get the 300 tubes of toothpaste free from coupons or all that free stuff from Menards rebates. If you use it, get it. If you "might" use it... think twice.
Nowadays, I don't pick up every bag of buttons or zippers that I see at a garage sale. I don't save every old pair of jeans for "a quilt that I'm going to make someday". These days, when I have an old pair of jeans, I cut them up and use them for cleaning rags. And then I throw the rags away after they are dirty.
That's not to say that I'm the perfect non-hoarder. I still have hoarding tendencies, but when I go to the grocery store or to a garage sale, I have specific guidelines on what and how much I can buy. I know that I am not in a famine, or Great Depression, or any other crisis event where I have to hoard. There is plenty of everything here in America, so I don't "need" stuff.