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Minimal

Posted on Saturday, August 20th, 2011

Dave!I spent my morning working.

I spent my afternoon and evening simplifying my life.

My goal is to throw away, give away, or sell half of my stuff. It's all stuff I want, but it's nothing I need, and I'm tired of boxes upon boxes of junk cluttering up my space. And though I never much thought of myself as a sentimental person, getting rid of so many things from my past has been tough. Some of this crap I've kept since childhood, and knowing it isn't going to be around anymore is sad for some reason. I rarely look at/use/play with any of it, so it really shouldn't be this hard, should it? I mean, it's just stuff sitting in boxes.

I'm lessening the blow by taking photographs of everything.

I'll probably never look at the pictures, but knowing that they're there will help with these senseless feelings of attachment I seem to have.

Hopefully once I'm done I won't replace the stuff I'm getting rid of with new crap I don't need. I really don't want to go through all this again in ten years.

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Comments

  1. Nenette says:

    I didn’t think I could love you more, but now, I do. I love reading about people purging and simplifying. I’m going through this exact process myself. Been doing so for about 3 years now. It’s unreal the amount of crap one can stuff in a 2-story home. Mostly kid crap.
    Taking pics too, especially of the kids’ artwork.
    It’s gotten easier to get rid of stuff as the enjoyment of more clear space increases.
    Have you read any minimalist blogs? They’re fascinating.

    Good luck, m’dear.

  2. Andy Hayes says:

    When’s the yard sale? :)

  3. I’m in the midst of the myself. “But my old (pizza box) PPC 6100/AV really doesn’t take up much space (and it cost a fortune)” or “someone will need it for parts someday”….

    And “besides I might need that for the Gary LaPointe computer museum someday…”! Actually, if I ever had my on computer/consulting/whatever business that had a physical presence (an office / storefront) I thought I’d have a history of computers in the lobby set up.

  4. Vern says:

    Every year my wife and daughters vacation in Germany for six (godforsaken) weeks. Combining my job, three community organizing gigs, and parenting with my penchant for hoarding leaves my office resembling Indiana Jones’ warehouse.

    Every summer she asks me to purge it, but the in-to-out ratio is about 176543:7 and I’m terrible at factoring. This year I’ve decided to try to use straight division without regard for remainders (pun intended).

    I’ve only got one week left!

  5. Vern says:

    Every year my wife and daughters vacation in Germany for six (godforsaken) weeks. Combining my job, three community organizing gigs, and parenting with my penchant for hoarding leaves my office resembling Indiana Jones’ warehouse.

    Every summer she asks me to purge it, but the in-to-out ratio is about 176543:7 and I’m terrible at factoring. This year I’ve decided to try to use straight division without regard for remainders (pun intended).

    I’ve only got one week left!

  6. Kyra says:

    I keep trying, but I’m convinced the boxes actually multiply on their own. And I have three “I CAN’T STAND TO BE PARTED FROM (whatever)” living here. My plan is when the kids have their own places, to stuff them full of the crap they were so attached to in the first place.

  7. the muskrat says:

    We did a little of this before moving. After seeing everything in boxes, we need to do it again before we move to whatever house we decide to buy!

    My grandparents kept lots of shit, and it took my mother and uncle 9mos to clean out their house after they died (in large part because they too were overly sentimental and couldn’t get rid of their parents’ shit either). Watching that process has made me significantly less attached to stuff, much to the disappointment of my mother, who keeps trying to pawn old furniture that’s been in the family for a long time onto me, despite said furniture NOT being our style.

    In any event, I think shedding things every year or so is wise and healthy.

  8. Ian says:

    I move around a lot, I am usually so minimal. All I need is my passport and my spirit. But I spent the last 10 months in one place and I am actually starting to worry about the stuff I have accumulated in that short time.

    I look around and think, what could I get rid of if I needed to and its worrying that I can’t think of a single thing I would like to part with.

  9. Sybil Law says:

    I am the queen of purging junk. I love it. I am allowed 1 box of stuff. Not a refrigerator sized box, either. One box. Everyone gets one box.
    But my husband saves EVERYTHING, in spite of my rule. He’s getting there, though.

  10. Darci says:

    I am currently visiting my in-laws in AZ (I refuse to call it a vacation) and everywhere I look there is STUFF. There will be some serious purging when I get home. Do we really need to keep the boxes from the MacBooks we purchased 3 years ago? I think not!

  11. Megan says:

    I’ve had an ongoing simplifying project going on this year. I’ve always been pretty ruthless when going through stuff, but there are always one or two things I have trouble getting rid of, too.

  12. Lisa says:

    I’ve been doing this too, especially with stuff I had in boxes. There are very few things I’ve saved out of sentimentality anymore because I’ve hauled that junk all over the world in my various moves and I’m over carrying it around. So my winter project is going to be a big purge push and hopefully I can get rid of a lot of it.

  13. Justin Scott says:

    Since we got our apartment back, and since we didn’t have access to our stuff for five months, I’ve been itching to clean house too. We have so much stuff, too much stuff.

    Problem is, I’m great at getting rid of stuff, Ryan is not. So, it might be that I am getting rid of 50-70% of my stuff and Ryan gets rid of nothing. Grrrr!

    Best of luck!

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