inspiration · Navigating Life

The Weight of Stuff

I’ve been feeling heavy lately.  Seeing as it’s a new year, I figure I’ll try to lose some weight, like the rest of America does around this time of year.  But, I’m not talking about reducing the weight of my physical body.  I’m talking about losing the weight of all the “stuff” I possess.

I was recently listening to an NPR program about happiness.  Part of it was this TED talk by Graham Hill called “Does Less Stuff Mean More Happiness?”  Graham’s story is that he sold his internet company for $10 million when he was just 28 years old.  Freshly cashed up, he made a ton of purchases, from a new home to new gadgets, filling the space around him with stuff.  There came a time when he began to feel an overwhelm about all his new acquisitions.  With more possessions came more stress, and it took more time to manage it all.  So, he decided to do what most millionaires aren’t doing – he got rid of his stuff.

Today he lives in an apartment that’s around 450 square feet.  Everything he needs is within those walls.  He says he feels more satisfied living this way, spending his time and money on experiences and relationships, instead of inanimate objects that were deceptively unfulfilling.

We may not all thrive in this similar minimalist path of life.  For me though, I know there are cupboards and closets in my home that hold stuff that I could stand to move on to a new home.  I’ve been procrastinating on the whole process of editing my things down to the essentials, and maybe I just haven’t been ready to let go of others.  It’s a new year now, a time to reset and reevaluate what is really essential to keep.

I’ll need some accountability on this of course, and it can’t be done in one afternoon or one weekend.  I can already think of two or three boxes of things that I’ve held on to that I really don’t want or need, but I feel sort of obligated to hang on to…those are the kinds of things that I’ll need an extra push to just let go.  My idea is to go through some bits at a time and then weigh the stuff that I’ve decided to let go of, and let you know how much “weight” I’ve lost at the end of this year.

If you want to follow my progress on this pet project, come find me on Instagram, @goldcountrymassage.  I’ll post my pics and updates there as I go along, and then get back to you with a summary of success, this time next year.

I invite you to join me in this quest of de-cluttering.  Our time here in this life is so precious and fleeting.  Let’s choose to possess only those things that we truly love and cherish, that bring us deep happiness, and place more importance on life-enriching experiences, friends and family.

Happy New Year!

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