Mockingbird, I find it easiest to start with trash. Anything that is outright trash with no question. Now, I realize this is more complicated if you feel compelled to recycle. But, in any case, bag up one bag of loose trash and either TAKE IT to recycling immediately (no saving it for later) or put it in the trash.
I also find it easier to do things that are not emotional. Things you are keeping just in case. Things you have duplicates of. Keep the nicer one, donate the other.
Does that help?
Come see us on the What are you doing today? thread, as we are most active over there. Would love to hear more about you!