We’ve been out of commission of late. On hiatus for a number of reasons. But now we’re back and better than ever. And one of the reasons why is because we got small.
By "small" I mean “downsized" (not Steve Martin kind of small). One of the big reasons for the lull in Becoming is that I’ve been moving and it’s been no easy feat.
Over the past several weeks, my family and I moved from our home of 17 years – 4,000 square feet – to a home two hours away that is 1,400 square feet. Get the picture? Yes, 17 years of cr*p that filled all that space – way too much space – and it’s been overwhelming to rifle through, scrutinize, and deliberate over items to determine whether to pack or purge. After two months of holding a garage sale, selling items on NextDoor, making countless trips to Goodwill and filling dumpster full of junk, we’re finally settling into our new place.
I equate this moving process to having a baby. The pregnancy (decision to sell in this case) is not all that bad – it’s exciting, but you feel a little queasy and you’re a little scared of the unknown. The delivery (selling and packing) is a painful (could have used an epidural during the packing process) and there’s some uncertainty about which turn it may take. The afterbirth (moving in) is annoying but necessary. Once you take that swaddled bundle of joy home (settling in to your new place), it’s intimidating, but the most beautiful feeling ever and you slowly forget about the process that led you to this point.
This baby, from both a lifestyle and a financial standpoint, has freed us up to live bigger. We are no longer servants to our home. Why we ever lived in a home that large is beyond me. Going smaller and way cheaper also freed up some cash to be able to do some of the travelling we’ve been dreaming of. And now that our daughter is off to college in the fall, we have more leeway to come and go as we please (while we’ll be missing her like crazy).
The net: I feel liberated. I might even burn my bra. Okay. I know. It’s only been two weeks and the jury is still out. But so far, so good.
All this said, I urge you to think about your lifestyle. How can you free yourself of physical junk to liberate you? How can you give yourself more freedom by getting smaller to live bigger?
Below are a few resources that helped me with the urge to purge for a better life.
Be More with Less, a website by Courtney Carver, is dedicated living simply. Courtney is so inspiring about getting rid of the unnecessary – in all facets of life – that it tempts you to live in a shoebox.
As with anything, it’s great to have a plan. Set your objectives, develop your strategies and go for it. When moving, I was forced to go room by room to clear the clutter while packing up. And I had a hard deadline to meet because the moving van was going to show up ready or not. But even if you’re staying put, a room-by-room strategy is the way to go and a deadline is a great way to keep yourself accountable. The Spruce provides a fantastic guide.
Whether you’re moving to a smaller space, or just downsizing your junk, it’s a perfect time to reorganize what you keep. When I want realistic and effective organization ideas, I turn to Real Simple. It offers list of what to purge and brilliant ideas about how to reorganize every room in the house.
"Best rule for a simple life… Care with no reason,
Love with no expectation"
– Ritu Ghatourey
And now back to you, Jane.
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