Letting things in by letting things go

Get rid of clutter and you may just find it was blocking the door you’ve been looking for

Katrina Mayer

This past weekend, I went with a family member on a home tour sponsored by a local elementary school to raise funds for playground equipment. All the homes which we toured through showcased fabulous pieces of artwork, furniture, books, bottles of wine, etc. The pursuit of creating perfectly curated homes was in evidence everywhere we went. The meaning attached to collecting these types of items has shifted drastically for me since I have retired from full time work.

I was struck by the irony that after many years of accumulating “things” many people often end up having to build additions on their homes or trade up for larger and larger living spaces. I found myself wondering what would become of all of these precious belongings in the future. Who would be tasked with the job of downsizing that would be inevitable? The energy and effort it would take to dispose of these possessions would be significant.

There seems to be a tug of war between the race to collect more and more things as evidenced by our tendency towards rampant consumerism and the minimalist movement which is focused on a need to reduce, recycle, and re-purpose. Reflecting on the reality that Marie Kondo has achieved both a cult and verb status, I am hyper aware that I have entered a life phase where my desire to downsize and possess “less” has never been stronger.

I do not seem to need a specialized strategy to act on this impulse. Moving into this next chapter seems to have created a natural evolution to let things go in order to free up more space in my life. The more I donate, recycle, sell or give things to others, the stronger the sense I have of creating room for new pursuits, interests, and passions. Who knew that embarking on a major decluttering project would open up so much emotional space for growth?

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