No matter whether it was your first car, your first car as a couple, or just a great vehicle that you worked hard to get, letting go of a beloved vehicle is difficult. Americans love their vehicles, and that love sometimes makes the decision to get rid of a vehicle seem too much to bear.
If you’re suffering from this dilemma, here are a few steps that can help you finally feel ready to take the plunge.
1. Recognize Why You’re Attached
The first step to dealing with an unnecessary attachment is to recognize why you have it. There are a few common reasons a person holds on to an old car long after its useful life has peaked. Understanding what motivates you can help you to find a way past it.
First, you may have put a lot of money into it, and you are reluctant to feel you have wasted that money. But the important thing to realize is that the vehicle provided solid financial value for a long time, and that value will only continue to decline. If you can recoup money from it now, you get one last financial boost to add to the years you’ve already received.
The second major reason it’s hard to let go is that we often attribute human qualities like trust, love, longing, or anger to an inanimate object. This is perfectly normal, but it makes an owner feel like they are abandoning the vehicle. If you’ve grown to love the car like a friend, remind yourself that it doesn’t share those feelings and won’t know anything.
2. Get a Buddy
If you can’t quite let go of a vehicle, why not ask for some emotional support to help you get there? Start by talking out your feelings with a trusted friend or family member. Don’t be embarrassed to be so attached to the vehicle. Remember that many people feel the same as you. As you acknowledge and verbalize your emotions, they often seem less daunting and you can work out a solution.
Then, ask your buddy to help you commit to the act of selling the car or keep to a timeline. He or she might help you make arrangements to get rid of the car, too. Some owners find it easier to let someone else handle the details, while others find more closure in making plans themselves.
3. Memorialize the Vehicle in Other Ways
A car or truck doesn’t need to be physically in your driveway for you to remember it fondly and keep the good times. Find another way to memorialize it that doesn’t involve leaving the car on your front lawn.
Are you reluctant to get rid of Old Betsy because she got you to and from college? Then find a photo from those college years with Old Betsy and have it framed. Recreate Old Betsy’s bumper full of stickers with a painting on the wall. Gather the family for a photoshoot with the car. If Old Betsy still works, why not take her out for one last outing? Toast the memories that your car was part of.
4. Look to the Future
Getting rid of a car is an ending to a chapter in your life, but it’s also the start of a new one. Focus on the future and the positive results of making this decision. If the car has been sitting idle in your yard, for instance, what will you do with the space now freed up in the landscape or the garage?
Even if you’re not starting a new chapter yourself, remember that your vehicle will now provide value to others, either as a form of transportation or as a source of parts.
If you need help deciding what to do with your old car, start by talking with the pros at City Auto Used Autoparts. We can help make plans for the safe disposal of your old car and be a partner in creating your new chapter. Call today to learn more.