If you’ve lost someone close to you, you are probably very aware that going through their belongings can be a big job, not to mention an emotional one. With this in mind, there’s a trend happening in Sweden that sounds like it could be pretty beneficial for everyone. People in Sweden are taking part in pre-death cleaning to rid their family members of the burden of sorting through a lifetime of belongings.
Döstädning, which translates to “death cleaning,” is a new way of downsizing and organizing. It was first introduced by Swedish author and artist Margareta Magnusson in her book The Gentle Art of Swedish Death Cleaning: How to Free Yourself and Your Family from a Lifetime of Clutter. The idea is that people over 50 should start purging and organizing everything they own so their children aren’t left to do it once they pass away, according to The Chronicle.
It may sound morbid, but it’s a really smart way to get organized, while simultaneously helping your kids out in a major way.
Pre-death cleaning would actually be a good thing for everyone to do — not just folks over 50. It isn’t just about organizing and getting rid of your old crap. It’s about streamlining your life and letting go of material things that serve no purpose in your life.
The book explains that the process of pre-death cleaning should be a slow and ongoing process. You should tell your family and friends about your intentions, as well as give them any of your belongings you think they’d like.
According to Magnusson, the best place to start is in your closet. It’ll likely feel therapeutic, and you’ll then want to tackle other rooms. Once you’re done, you should reward yourself. Not by going to your favorite store (duh) but by treating yourself to a movie, a manicure, a massage, or something else you love.
You can pick up Magnusson’s book on Amazon for $11.39.