If you own any clothing that doesn’t fit you anymore, have something you’ve never worn that was a gift, or something you picked out ages ago that still has tags on it, then, you need to prune your closet. Yes ladies, it’s time to say your goodbyes, but keep the memories if you want to (really—you can take a picture of you wearing the item) and let the clothes go. Don’t distress them or yourself another day. Put them in a big bag and drop them off at your local Salvation Army, or another charity of choice. Sharing is caring.

You can do a thorough reality check on your clothing by standing in front of your closet and asking yourself the questions shown below for each article of clothing in your closet. It’s easy to get overwhelmed with this task, so you may want to take a few days for this, depending on the size of your wardrobe. It’s helpful to enlist the help of an honest, no-nonsense friend to get it done in one shot (why risk the temptation to keep hoarding, stay in denial, and prolong the pain?).

Ask Yourself . . . If . . . Then Do This . . .

1. Do I still like this item?
– Yes (Proceed to the next question.)
– No (Donate this item to charity or a friend who wants it.*)

2. Does this item still fit me? (Please be real and honest with yourself.
– Yes (Proceed to the next question.)
– No (Donate this item to charity or a friend who wants it.*)

3. Do I receive compliments when I wear this item? Does this item make me feel good when I put it on? Is it comfortable and does it suit my body?
– Yes (to all) (It’s a keeper.)
– No (Donate this item to charity or a friend who wants it.*)

4. Have I worn this item in the past year? Will it be in style next year? (NOTE: If you have nothing to coordinate it with, hold it in a separate “maybe” pile. Then once you finish with all the items in your closet, go back through the “maybe” pile and decide whether to donate it or make a match.)
– Yes
– No (Try it on and see how you feel wearing it. Then start over again from question 1.)

* When it comes to a clothing swap, please note, do not pass on a dud! If you really care about your friends, do not offer them something that doesn’t fit them or is otherwise unflattering.

Other people’s opinions of the way you dress should not be dismissed immediately if they are truly trying to help you better yourself. Let me be clear. I’m not talking about trying to portray a false image to impress people; I’m talking about representing the best You. Wearing clothes that help you feel confident and show off your best features tastefully will work in your favor.

– Daree Allen

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