I recently went through the process of culling a collection. Many of us collect something and when our collection grows it needs storage, care and maintenance. It’s important to review our collections every so often, to check it’s still in good condition and that some, or all of it, still makes our heart sing. It’s also good to review how it’s being stored to make sure it’s being looked after.
Culling My Crystal Collection
I’ve always been a bit of a collector of things, ever since I was a kid. I had sticker collections, letters, books, memorabilia from singers, posters and my most prized and favourite would have been my rocks and crystals. My collections have dwindled over the years and now I really only collect teacups and crystals (semi-precious stones).
One element Roseline mentioned was that I should declutter my crystals or at least rotate what was on display. Below is a photo of all the rocks I had around the house, and the majority of them lived on the hall table in the picture.
For those who are into crystals, you’re probably already thinking “Of course you’d only have a few out at a time, there’s too much ‘energy’ going on there.” An explanation for those of you not into them: the belief is crystals emit energies so, much like a room full of people talking, a table full of crystals may give off a ‘noisy’ energetic field. At least this is my interpretation of what Roseline’s advice was trying to get across.
Any-who, Feng Shui aside, I’m sure you can see that I had a lot. Everything I owned was out on display, and because I prefer ‘like with like’, they were all essentially in one spot. I love the look of them. I enjoy looking at them. I collect them. Up until this point, I’d collected with a level of obsession or compulsion. I used to think it felt wrong not to acquire another. They’re small right? They won’t take up much room! Besides, wouldn’t it be cool to have one of each stone that existed? I’d been collecting crystals since I was 6. I enjoyed these shiny, colourful things.
After Roseline’s visit though, I started to think about my collection. During one of my many dusting expeditions I realised that it took ages to dust around them. I noticed that I didn’t ‘see’ a lot of them anymore. They were in my house, but I wasn’t really seeing, or connecting with them. I didn’t look at them as much as I used to. I saw there were some there I didn’t really like anymore.
I then questioned why I hadn’t decluttered my crystals like I did my container cupboard or wardrobe.
A voice popped in, “Don’t break up the collection, that’s sacrilege!” So I sat on it for a few months. I wanted to challenge myself though. My motivation was to have less on display and see if it impacted my life from the Feng Shui perspective. I was also curious to challenge myself, as I challenge my clients daily.
This was the motivation I needed to stare my collection in the face and be honest with myself. Do I really need five pieces of amethyst? Should I really keep the fossils that I don’t really like? Do I really want to dust, clean and wash these stones regularly? The answer to all of these was, “No!”.
Process to Cull a Collection
I took the time to assess each stone. I’ll step through how I did this, so you can consider how you could approach a collection you might have.
I started with the easy stuff. I picked out those that I loved and wanted to keep for sure.
Then I went through and culled those that I knew I didn’t want.
Then I got to the ones that were trickier to decide on.
I asked myself the logical questions:
- Do I need it?
- Do I have more than one of this crystal?
- Do I like it?
- Do I have good memories with it?
- Do I have a good relationship with the person who gave it to me?
Sometimes this helped and I made the decision to keep or purge.
Other times I had to go with my gut. If I felt too anxious about saying goodbye, I asked myself why? What was I letting go of? Really…. This helped me to part with some. If I still felt uneasy, I decided that was a sign that I wasn’t ready to let it go, so I kept them.
Displaying My Collection
The final important step in culling a collection is to decide how to display it. Once I’d made a choice on each and every stone, I then selected a few to place around the house on display.
The others got boxed up into display boxes. I pull these out regularly now, to either rotate those on display or to simply look at them with my daughter. The rotation means much less dusting and maintenance.
Those that I didn’t keep, I posted up on a local Facebook page and asked them to go to homes that would love and cherish them. Which they did.
A few years down the track, I haven’t regretted my decision at all. It’s been one of my toughest tasks thus far, but very liberating. I thought my experience with and process for culling a collection, therefore, would be helpful to share.
Do you have a collection? Have you spent some time with it recently? Do you still truly love it? Why not get it out and give it the attention it deserves? Reconnect with it, or pass it on.