Living With Less


Last weekend, we gave away our broken old upright piano that no one plays. I don’t miss it, except it was a great clutter holder and dust collector. It was good for that!

I was happy to give it to someone who will get it repaired and use it. 

All this stuff that we’ve accumulated has become a burden taking up space, getting in the way and needing to be maintained. How did that happen?

I came across an article about Minimalism, a movement that two American guys, Joshua Fields Milburn and Ryan Nicodemus are promoting. By their late twenties, Joshua and Ryan were were living the American dream, making six figure income,s living the good life with fancy cars and houses. They also worked eighty hour work weeks, were totally stressed, and had no time to enjoy life.

For Joshua, it took the death of his mother and a divorce to force him to take stock. He decided to downsize to a simpler life and his friend, Ryan joined him. He started the minimalism movement and has even written a book that he is promoting on a book tour. The site is http://www.theminimalists.com/

I love this whole idea of minimalism. Of course I still like my comforts, but I do like the whole philosophy of being content with less and not always buying new things.

We are bogged down by our materialism and consumerism. Wouldn’t it be great to have less stuff and less stress? What a freeing feeling.

These days the cost of living is always rising, squeezing us tighter and tighter. It certainly makes a person think twice before splurging on something. Is it a need or just a want? 

Or is it just those clever marketers making us think we need this stuff? It’s easy to be brainwashed into thinking there is something wrong with you if you don’t have the latest and the greatest. I see that a lot with people always upgrading to the newest cell phone or laptop. Our obsession with buying new stuff consumes all our time and makes us want more and more. Where does it end? Have we lost sight of what’s really important? What about more important values like sharing and caring for each other? What about giving back to the community?

It makes sense to get rid of excess possessions and not buy so much in the first place. Appreciate what you have and be content with less. It’s good for your health, good for the community and the environment, too. 

Comments

  1. I love the thought you have shared, Cathy! By giving away or removing the unnecessary or not used things, we make room for just the essential, and give ourselves more breathing space, not only in our home but in our minds too!

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    1. You're so right, Shilpa. Our cluttered house reflects my cluttered mind. When I clean out some of the physical clutter, my mind feels clearer, too. Good point!

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  2. Lovely thought, Cat :) It's very useful. esp to someone like me who is just making a new home- It is good to get rid of the excess things at home and not buy so much in the first place.

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    1. All the best in your new place! A new place means a new start and that's a good time to get rid of things, I find. Maybe that's my problem as we've been in the same house for 23 years. LOL!

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  3. I have actually done a decluttering exercise today. Began small. With one kitchen cabinet and one bookshelf. But I felt wonderful. Gave away a whole bunch of bags that I haven't used in over a year! So much stuff gets accumulated without our intending to hoard. We need that minimalist thinking, ever so often!

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    1. Good for you doing that decluttering, Shailaja. I must do more of it. It's true that stuff accumulates as if it's growing. People give us things and we don't use them. Stuff wears out or clothes get stained or shrink. It sure feels good to purge every so often. I am not trying to be as much of a minimalist as Gandhi but I sure would like to be less of a clutter bug.

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  4. I needed this reminder, Cathy! Thank you. I must get back to the decluttering routine I was following earlier.

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  5. I love the concept of less is more. If only I would get around to decluttering.

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  6. Yes. Yes! Nodding all the way. Downsizing is a great exercise! We have moved so many times the last years- so many rounds of going through our stuff, giving away... But surprising how little stuff we actually need... Great post dear Cathy

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  7. Less is more indeed...such a profound concept you know...But it's so hard to follow it no? loved reading it...

    Random Thoughts Naba - The Weekend Roundup...

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  8. Wise words, Cathy! Simplicity is not always easy to accomplish, but is definitely something for which to strive.

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