Yep, I've said it before and I'll say it again: I've got too much stuff. Does anyone remember the article I wrote on this exact topic last year? Here I am, still on the journey of purging and de-cluttering. Since setting my noble goal to get rid of 75% of my possessions, I've done quite a bit of chucking things into the Goodwill pile. However, I also did a fair bit of acquiring new things, which slowed the process down a bit. Thankfully, with the institution of the shopping ban, the steady flow of stuff has slowed to a dull trickle.
While my consumption is so limited, I'm taking this excellent opportunity to evaluate the things I do have and toss out more of what I don't need. I've already made considerable headway this month. I've gotten rid of about one garbage bag full of stuff!
But you may be wondering why I am choosing an existence which might seem austere to some. I'll give you three good reasons why I'm de-cluttering when everyone else seems to be - well - cluttering:
Stuff Takes Time and Space and Money
This might seem confusing at first, but once examined, this concept is simple. Let's say you have 76 articles of clothing. Each of these items takes time to care for - washing, folding, putting away, repairing (if you're thrifty like me!). Each one takes up space in your closet. And each one took money to purchase and takes money to wash and care for. The less stuff you have, the more time, space, and money are freed up for you!
Stuff Makes You Unhappy
Not kidding, this has literally been proven. Possessions stress you out! And with all that time, space, and money you spend on them, it makes sense that they would. What really gets to me is clutter. It's an eyesore, it makes any room feel smaller, and it's just not fun. What if you could spend all the time and money you use to care for, acquire, and house stuff on something else that could really make you happy, like spending time with friends or traveling to new places? That would beat a pile of stuff, any day.
Lots of Stuff Makes Moving Super Annoying!
This last one is rather specific, and it's mostly on my mind because I'm a college student, so I'm in a period of ongoing transition. Every few months I move out of one place, into another. And it sure is easier to move when you don't have as much stuff to pack up. In May, when I was preparing to move out of my dorm, I packed up a lot of my stuff a few weeks early and sent it home. It was all stuff that I did use occasionally, but I new I wouldn't NEED any of it in the last few weeks of school. What I discovered was quite liberating; all that stuff was mostly just useless crap. I had sent off most of my clothes, and suddenly it was so easy to get dressed in the morning. A lot of the things I'd kept in my desk were pretty much useless. Needless to say, moving back into my parent's house for the summer was much easier once I got rid of many of these things.
If you're wondering whether I did ever get rid of 75% of my stuff, the answer is: I'm not sure but I doubt it. I realized very quickly that quantifying that sort of thing was not for me. In an upcoming post, I'll give you some tips on getting rid of your crap. Until then, I hope this helped and that you may consider a lighter, less cluttered life :)