Drumbeat of Change: Downsizing, Rightsizing, Getting Rid of Stuff

Items to be donated.

Do you hear the drumbeat of change? Downsizing, Rightsizing, Getting Rid of Stuff?

It started quietly enough for me — Think Huey Lewis & the News Heart of Rock & Rock: Less is more.

Then the drums got a bit louder a la Atreyu Do You Know Who You Are: Keep only what sparks joy when you hold it in your hands. Let the rest go.

Bags & bags of items donated.

Until the drums and the beat invaded my very soul — John Bonham’s Moby Dick: Give everything away except the bare necessities you need to function as a human.

The truck was full within hours.

Raise your hand if you are currently embracing any of the downsizing, rightsizing, getting rid of stuff trends.

<Eyes scan the crowd for raised hands>

Not really, eh?

I’m done, as in I’m finished, exhausted, ready for a rest done. Over the last year I joined the “less is more” band as I prepped our long-time family home for sale. I held thousands of my things in my hands to see if they sparked joy, and even the many that still did spark joy? I got rid of them too. I had to make sure me and my stuff would fit into my new abode.

At the end? I donated entire rooms full of furniture, boxes and boxes of my semi-precious items. They are gone. Shout out to ReStore of Morris for their enthusiasm for my donations and their volunteers’ willingness to work hard for a cause they believe in: helping homeless people become home owners.

Here I sit, much, much lighter in many ways, but still reaching for things I no longer own.

We Americans who grew up in the age of advertising and marketing learned from a young age to define ourselves, our self-worth, through the things we purchase. The drumbeat of change, of less, is slow to catch on with us, I think. We measure our self worth by the pound…by the sometimes valuable, but always shiny things we collect and save. We’ve been programmed from a young age to desire things., to use things to show how kind/happy/worthy/rich/deserving we truly are. Change is difficult, but necessary.

Will you be downsizing, rightsizing, getting rid of stuff anytime soon?

How does it make you feel?

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