Less Is the New More?

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I look around the rooms in my house and see the excesses of my life. Way beyond “need” and all about “want.” I bought a fairly big house seven years ago because I seem to collect family members and felt I needed lots of room. However, for the last five years, I’ve been getting rid of things and there is still no real evidence of this effort. I have wall-to-wall furniture, vases, books, dishes, plants, clothes, shoes, purses, and jewelry. And to what end? I do believe that simplicity is good. Yet I surround myself with all the trappings of modern life. Clearly, I need to make a greater effort to eliminate some of the needless clutter. 

I mean how many crystal vases does one woman need? One. I think this is the answer to this dilemma. I’ll keep one of each item and all remaining multiples of things will need to go somewhere else. But where? My children? Hmmmm. Maybe not. I don’t think any of them are really “into” clutter. There is always charitable giving … this always makes me feel good. Though I’m not sure this is the best match for the items I need to pass on. I could open a small store and sell it. Now there’s an idea. And I could get my friends to get rid of their excesses and bring their items for sale. I have two girlfriends who have more “stuff” than I do … much more … and more expensive as well. 

This is a strange problem to have, really. I’ve worked my whole life to “have things” and now that I do, I feel guilty for living with the excess. So, what is this really about? Psychologists would say I am trying to fill a need or a void in my life. If so, I think I am a real success at it. Though I can’t say I have really felt a “yearning”… and if I do … I buy it. Oh, you mean relationships? Does this signify a lack of love? I’ve always felt loved … I have a great family … crazy friends … and a multitude of interests to keep me endlessly busy. I’m looking forward to retirement so I can do more. Uh-oh. There’s that word again … more.

Maybe I just hopelessly want more in life. This starts out as “things” and then morphs into activities. I want to read more books, travel more, create more, share more, have more friends, and just do more. Isn’t this what living fully is all about? Full engagement in what life has to offer. A desire for new experiences. And if I buy another purse or new earrings along the way, it’s probably okay. I’m going to give myself permission to “get rid of” the guilt of my excesses. So I guess it’s true … less is the new more.



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