30 Days Later: A Little Less Stuff-y

I have officially completed my 30-day, self-imposed “get rid of stuff campaign.” Here are some things I learned along the way:
  • ​The things that occupy my space really should fall into two main categories: things that I use and things whose beauty bring me joy.
  • Just because I have physical space in my house to store something doesn’t mean I should keep it.
  • Physical stuff that isn’t meaningful is noisy. Being in its proximity wears me out and is like having a low-level frequency of humming in my ears all day long.
  • I can get a physical rush from acquiring stuff. That’s why if the price is right (or perhaps free), I’ll talk myself into getting a less-than-desirable item.
  • I shouldn’t feel guilty if I don’t want to keep something that was received as a gift. I know this sounds heartless, but my mom reminds of this often, and it’s an extremely freeing concept.
  • Nostalgia is a strong driver for keeping some things I don't use.
  • When it comes to clothes, I should only keep what fits me well.
  • I love hair products and I'm not willing to change that part of my life (seriously).
  • It's easier to part with stuff when I can give it to someone I know.
  • A room with less stuff simply feels lighter.
  • Other people can help, and also hinder, my efforts to de-clutter my space.
  • If I use something once each decade, I probably don’t need it.
  • If my stuff isn’t serving a purpose, I sometimes don’t notice it, even if I walk by it each day.
  • I only scratched the surface of what I can get rid of in my house. At times, I felt resistance and I want to part with more things that make me feel uncomfortable.
  • My stuff has been part of my evolution. It illustrates interests and hobbies that have come and gone, lessons I’ve conquered, skills I’ve acquired, good choices I’ve made (as well as bad ones), and my stuff has defined certain periods in my life.
  • It’s easy to think material things automatically equate to pleasure, but they often end up being a burden.
  • I’m not Mother Theresa — I still want stuff. But I recognize that not all stuff is created equal. I need to be even more particular about what I bring into my presence.
  • Overall, eliminating stuff has been a metaphor for how I want to keep growing in life. Every now and then, it’s time to clean the literal and figurative house — to remove stuff, jobs, obligations, people, etc., that are no longer serving me. By doing so, it creates space for other more beautiful and fulfilling things to enter.