2019 – More of Less
Well that’s that. 2018 is now in the rear-view mirror. Whoosh! Zip! Ping! Gone.
As is customary with my wife and I we did our annual end of year yuletide road trip to Adelaide, South Australia. It’s a family thing.
This year to make the drive somewhat less boring I downloaded an audio book prior to our departure as eight hours on the road provides little of interest once you’ve cleared Dadswell’s Bridge which is home to the Giant Koala. (Google it)
The chosen book was All That Remains by Joshua Fields Millburn & Ryan Nicodemus, known more simply as, the minimalists.
Since 2009 they have blogged, written books, conducted lectures and even a TedX talk on the broader life changes and effects of living with less. Less possessions, less clutter, less monthly bills and other ongoing obligations which when combined leads to less stress, less anxiety and less decision fatigue.
Don’t get me wrong, they’re not monks living with nothing but a blanket, but when any of us stop and take a look at our homes and lives, how much crap have you accumulated. I have heaps and you probably do to.
I have always been a minimalist at heart anyway. Whenever I have lived by myself and in charge of my own home or flat, I’ve opted for a less is more approach to decorating, furniture and household items. However, I’m married now and I know I have married a maximalist.
As my career progressed and now my business grows, I’ve opted for a new suit or two. A new tie or cufflinks every now and again. I’ve treated myself to a new laptop computer even through the old one still functions, so that’s now become the spare back up computer. But that’s in conjunction to the old old laptop that was previously the back up computer, not to mention several old portable hard drives and even more USB thumb drives and that just looking at business clothes and computer equipment. It just gets worse from there.
So, after my road-trip and charged with reducing clutter and streamlining material possessions, I’ve made a commitment to getting rid of shit. And surprisingly, my wife has too.
Interestingly, it’s been easy to make the decision to commence freeing myself of additional stuff, after realising that we’ve succumbed to the materialism and consumerism of the modern era.
Steve Jobs was famous for his black turtle-neck sweater that he previously wore every day and he described that style as something he was comfortable wearing but more importantly, one less decision he had to make each day. President Obama during his time in the White House also subscribed to a similar technique by having two colours of suits, one colour of shirts and a few ties, which Michelle Obama would lay out on the bed for him each morning thus, no decision required.
So, as the bags of stuff accumulate by the door ready for donation to charity and more importantly, whilst I’m on my third bag of rubbish (already) put into the bin, I feel a weight lifting from me already. Less really is feeling like more right now. More power, more freedom, more time and more space.
Stay tuned. It’s early days. Happy New Year.