There is a quote by Joel Osteen that speaks perfectly to our work when assisting clients with downsizing:

“The reason the windshield is so large, and the rearview mirror is so small is because what’s happened in your past is not nearly as important as what’s in your future.”

It is surprising how that small rearview mirror, representing our past, can hold so much power when it comes to making decisions about our cherished possessions. The past can be so powerful that it can stop people from moving forward to a place they really want to go.

Moving soon? WayForth has you covered. Our team of professionals help with packing and unpacking, downsizing, floor planning, and more. Contact us today to schedule a consultation!

Here are four ways to approach your treasured possessions in order to put the rearview mirror in perspective:


Taking pictures of an item is a terrific way to preserve memories. Having a picture will capture the memory forever. Honor your favorite photos with a frame, make a shadow box, or have a move manager organize your photos in an album. Use your creativity while preserving your memories.


When you love and cherish an item, it likely has a story. Who gave it to you? Where were you when you bought it? How long have you had it, and how have you used it? Why does it make you happy?

Storytelling is a big part of the downsizing process, sometimes literally. While helping a retired school teacher downsize, we saw her difficulty parting with one of the books she enjoyed reading to her young students without reading it “one more time.”

Happy to help, we sat down on the floor and looked up at her while she read it one more time. Once done, she was able to say goodbye and pass it forward. Having someone else understand its importance by telling an item’s story makes letting go easier.


Feeling good about the next recipient of your items is another way to help with the process of letting go. The more time you have for this research, the better you will feel.

If you have old yearbooks, see if your college or high school would like them. If you have sheet music, research who might really appreciate it, and get it to them. Old medical equipment could be donated to one of the teaching hospitals. Old gowns could be welcomed by a local drama club. Fur coats can be given to a pet shelter. The possibilities are endless if you give yourself time to research. The benefits are priceless, allowing you to move forward with a feeling of pride and gratitude.


Passing things forward to family members can be meaningful both for you and the family member. Get creative and keep things in the family. Put a meaningful inscription in your favorite books and gift them; your loved ones will cherish this gift forever. Most importantly, pass it on and move forward.

Taking care of emotions surrounding your possessions can make downsizing an enjoyable and meaningful experience. It will remind you, when the decision-making gets tough, that you are doing this for a reason. Your future, the windshield, is big and bright; downsizing is a good way to put the past into your “small” rearview mirror.

WayForth is your professional move management company here to help with all of your moving needs. Our solutions take the stress and hassle out of moving. Contact us today to learn how our moving professionals can help you!

About the Author: WayForth

WayForth is the definitive provider of comprehensive and personalized moving solutions for life and business. Since 2016, WayForth has led the way in move management, providing solutions to over 15,000 individuals and families. How you move matters and no matter the destination, WayForth serves as a guide making life’s transitions easier to navigate. Call 1.844.WAYFORTH today to learn how we can help with your next move!
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