Don’t break down those big boxes your holiday gifts came in just yet! You can reuse cardboard boxes by packing them up with donations and shipping them to Goodwill— for free.
When we give cheerfully and accept gratefully,
everyone is blessed.
I know you’re already being good little boys and girls and breaking down those big boxes to be recycled. And that’s definitely a good thing! But did you know you can reuse cardboard boxes from Amazon or any other place, any time of the year, to pack up donations to Goodwill and have them shipped for free? You can even have them picked them up right from your house or office!
Apparently the Give Back Box program has been around for a while, but I’d never come across it before, and this is a great time to spread the word: everybody has big, sturdy boxes from their online orders being delivered.
Gathering up donations at this time of year means you can declutter to make room for the new items you’re gifted; you can clean more easily, which helps with lifting your mood (there’s seemingly a connection between clutter and mental state, especially as we grow older), improving your feng shui, and obviously making for a cleaner house for the new year ahead.
Going through the hidden recesses of your closets and the dark corners under your bed will undoubtedly uncover treasures you’d forgotten about so they can be used. Choosing items to donate is a good exercise in giving for kids after the craziness of the holidays.
And it goes without saying that Goodwill donations are tax-deductible, support jobs in your community and help those in need!
So here’s what you do.
Hang onto those boxes your holiday gifts arrive in.
Go through your house and let go of all the clothes, shoes, jewelry, books, toys, household items, etc. in good condition that you no longer use or that don’t “bring you joy.” Be ruthless! Trust me, it may be hard at first but you will feel so good once you’re done.
Pack your box up. There is no weight limit, but *no electronics, any liquids, fragile, hazardous or volatile items, or ammunition.*
Create a Give Back Box account. This lets you create and print your shipping labels.
Ship your box. You can send it UPS or USPS, by dropping off or ordering a pickup online.
Get a Tax Deduction receipt. After you ship, you can itemize your donation online and Give Back Box will email your receipt after the donation has been received and processed.
Now, obviously, if you have a Goodwill nearby, it’s just as easy to do the dropoff yourself; this is to make it easier for those who don’t have a donation dropoff that’s convenient or don’t have a way of getting donations there themselves (or maybe have a bad habit of letting Goodwill boxes sit in their car for months at a time. Ahem.).
The week after Christmas tends to be Goodwill’s busiest of the year, so if you’ve a couple of hours free consider checking in with your store and seeing if they could use help receiving donations!
Need decluttering inspiration?
These are my favorite books about decluttering and getting your house in order.