When we enjoy something, it’s often our tendency to want to own a piece of it. It could be a souvenir from a vacation, some sports gear from something we tried once, or even comic books that have been collected over years. Or maybe we got drawn in to a great sale, for something we don’t use.
Material possessions don’t satisfy us. After a short time the appeal wears off and instead of stuff giving us a full life, it actually eats away at our freedom. It weighs us down and can cause anxiety over the organization, maintenance, and storage of it.
An over abundance of possessions can distract us from doing what we really care about. If we’ve ever had to clean out the garage, attic, basement, storage locker or pack/unpack a move, we’ve probably felt like stuff is an anchor, keeping us from spending time doing more important things.
There are great benefits to consuming less: our money goes further; it allows for more space in our homes; and it frees us to be able to pick up and go with fewer worries. Plus, it’s calming to be in a clear space.
The thought of going minimal can be hard, but it’s not restrictive. It allows for greater choice. For example, we can purchase fewer, but better quality items. If we rent something instead of buy it, we don’t need to worry about maintenance. Without an anchor of payments, we can be more selective in our careers. Ultimately, owning less gives us more time, energy, money, options, and choice.
Take action: Get rid of 100 things. Here’s a tougher challenge, let a loved one choose 5 of your items to let go. Try selling expensive items, find charities that can use the practical stuff, and toss or recycle the junk.
:: Inspired by Joshua Becker’s book, The More of Less: Finding the Life You Want Under Everything You Own
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