Yeh, I did it. I got rid of the hoarder fetish item, the computer box. How did I talk myself into it? I used a technique from Buried in Treasures called “the Downward Arrow.” Basically you or someone else helps you to explore the logic of your thinking about your possessions so you can make a mindful decision about keeping or tossing.
Here’s how I did it, with the help of my husband:
Me: My computer is four years old, but I’m afraid to get rid of the box. What if it breaks and I need to ship it for repairs, and I have no box?
Dearly Beloved: What would happen if you had to ship it and you had no box?
Me: Well, I could take it to the Apple Store for repairs. But what if they needed to send it out?
DB: Well, what would happen?
Me: I guess they have ways of wrapping them. Im sure it wouldnt be the first time a customer brought in a machine without a box. Maybe they would only need to send a part. But what if I needed to sell it? What if we had to move?
DB: You know we’re not moving.
Me: Yeh, that’s unlikely.
DB: When have you ever sold a computer?
Me: Umm, never.
DB: What would be so bad about that, if you had to sell it without a box?
Me: Well, I guess I could find other materials to wrap it in. I’m pretty resourceful. But it would be more desirable if it had its original box. And what if I had to ship it?
DB: What if you did?
Me: Well, I guess I’d just have to sell it locally. We do live in a well-populated area, so I’m sure I could find a buyer nearby.
DB: If you ever really did need a box there are shipping places that will even do it for you.
Me: OK, I made up my mind: I’m tossing it.
Guess what? It feels really good to not have to walk around that giant box.
Update, Sept. 16: It’s still outside and I’m SO not tempted to take it back in. It still feels great!