Alternatives to the trash can

Haven't quite got the stomach for just throwing something away?

Consider these alternatives:

Selling
– There's a tradeoff here between time spent and money gained.  (Read more about this in past posts Do The Math and What's Your Time Worth?).
– One way to offset that is to add some to gain side of the equation when where it goes makes you happy. Selling something very cheap to or bartering for it with a worthy person can feel great. For example, you might provide a nice older camera to a new photography student.

Giving It Away
– Or you could just give something to that worthy person.
– Charitable organizations are another obvious destination for things of value or utility which no longer fit in your life. How about donating it to the library, a school, or just good old Goodwill?
– You can also have a good deal of fun getting a crowd together for a Pirate Gift Exchange of wonderfully weird stuff. Here's how it works: Wrap everything. Draw numbers. Person number one picks something and unwraps it. Person number two can either steal it or unwrap something else. When what you have gets stolen, you can steal anything but that from another player or unwrap something new. When you don't have what you want you can extol its virtues to other players in the hope that they will steal it from you. Popular items will go racing round the room in repeated thefts. Hilarity ensues!

Author: dinahsanders

Author. Discardian. Defender of life, liberty, & the pursuit of happiness. she/her

4 thoughts on “Alternatives to the trash can”

  1. My friends and I have the “hand me over” club. We ask one another if a get rid of clothing or decorative item is wanted by another and exchange them. Just make sure the item is not one that person gave you! What is left immediately goes to Goodwill. Never sell an item someone gave you if you know they frequent the store or will see it on Craigslist.

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  2. For families (or individuals) that go through trying out various sports (golf, tennis, bowling, etc), and then move on to something else, leaving the equipment to gather dust in the closet…
    Instead of trying to sell the used gear, either directly or to a sports shop (which will usually fetch very little), contact your local high school sports program coordinator, and see if they can use some gear in good condition.
    Our family had gone through the ‘golf’ phase, and found we had multiple sets of clubs in the closet. A call to Pioneer High found that their golf team was looking for equipment. We donated, and got a nice thank-you note from the coach, with a fair-market estimate of the worth of the goods.
    Now if I can only find someone that wants a few bowling balls…

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  3. My building has a “free spot” where people leave little things that they’ve decluttered to trade with everyone else in the building. It’s a good way to get rid of just a few objects that are still useful.
    My stitch and bitch has a yarn swap every year. Each person brings good yarn that they haven’t touched. We have an “auction” where my friend shows off the yarn, and everything that doesn’t go to a new home goes to Materials for the Arts, a charity that the city runs that has a “store” where arts non-profits can come to stock up on things that are too good to just throw out.

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