First, a daughter got married. She and her new husband are college students. So she and her husband were delighted to pick through our holdings to furnish her new home. We packed up a 17' U-Haul with enough furniture to fill their two-bedroom apartment.
A challenge my spouse had experienced previously when asked to part with belongings was his emotional attachment to the items. But since the items going with our daughter were still "in the family," he didn't mind as much.
We were still buried in masses of stuff, however.
Then I came across the book "Buried in Treasures: Help for Compulsive Acquiring, Saving, and Hoarding." [http://www.amazon.com/exec/obidos/ASIN/0195300580/bookstorenow79-20]
The spouse did not share my enthusiasm about this new book as I read passages aloud to my visiting daughter and my younger children. When it got to the "quiz" to determine the particular factors contributing to having too much stuff, my spouse was at least willing to give his
answers as well.
To my surprise I learned that all three of us who were adults (me, my spouse, and our married daughter) had factors that contribute to accumulating more than we discard.
For my daughter, it is her love of free or bargain acquisitions.
For me, it is my belief that I will get around to fixing things.
For my spouse it is a love of collecting combined with concern about adding to landfills and avoidance of the resulting clutter in our own home.
By the end of the book, my spouse's resistance to discussion of clutter was (mostly) gone.