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Sunday, May 15, 2011

Are you overwhelmed with Stuff?


“The more you have, the more you are occupied. The less you have, the more free you are.”

Blessed Mother Theresa




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Do you ever feel overwhelmed? Like there is too much stuff in you life? The average household has grown in square footage  but our houses are more full than ever. Storage facilities are big business because people have more stuff than they have more room for. I don’t have time to go into all the reasons why here. I will save that for another day. Today I want to address the question of  ‘Do we need it all?”
In our lives no matter who we are we accumulate stuff. If you earn more money than average you probably accumulate better stuff. I have inherited things from all sorts of family members and friends who pass on their old stuff to us. I wish to say thank you to everyone who thinks of us. But at some time we end up with too much stuff.  When is it too much? 
  • When you can no longer close your closets, or your dresser drawers, you probably have too much stuff.
  • When you can no longer park your car in the 2 car garage, you probably have too much stuff. 
  • When you have to buy a storage shed or rent a storage facility you probably have too much stuff.
  • If you spend all day working to pay for or picking up or cleaning your stuff, you probably have too much stuff.
  • If you moved 3 years ago and still have boxes you have not unpacked, you probably have too much stuff.
  • If you desire less clutter in your house, you probably have too much stuff.
  • If you don’t use all of your stuff regularly, you may have too much stuff
  • If you can’t find something when you want to use it, you may have too much stuff.

We have plenty of storage at our house.  My kids can close their dressers and closets and not worry about something falling out and hitting them on the head.  Yet somehow I feel like stuff is overwhelming me. At my house we only seem to use 20% of our stuff on a regular basis.  We seem to wear the same clothes every week. We use the same kitchen appliances on a regular basis. We even use the same mugs on a daily basis.
So what is a Granola Catholic to do? We have decided to reduce our possessions by 20%, by the end of May. (now you see why this post is going up a little late). I have been working for the last week on cleaning out and decluttering our house room by room. I am making an effort to take away 20% in each area. That means 20% in clothing , 20% in books, 20% in my kids’ rooms. (yes the kids too).  You get the drift.  Some of these items will be sold at a family yard sale, some on craigslist and at the end of the month anything left will go to charity.

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7 comments:

TheKidIsRich said...
This comment has been removed by a blog administrator.
Alyssa said...

That's great! Thanks for the inspiration--I really need to declutter my kids' room and believe it or not, my husband's stuff--he has more golf hats and golf 'stuff' than any one man should ever have!
Happy Monday!

granola catholic said...

I was pleasantly surprised at how on board everyone is this time. I plan on having a great yard sale this Saturday. The plan is to get rid of it. If it does not sell, donation site here we come.

BarbaraR said...

I just stumbled across your blog and had to laugh....we are thinking of purchasing a shed tomorrow to store the kid's "outside" stuff. Hubby is tired of moving it around in the garage. I think we have too much "stuff" for sure!

Jackie said...

I always want less stuff - but then I get conflicted about giving away gifts! Our place is pretty small (500sq ft), but some stuff I don't want to get rid of just yet. Like the quilt I had in college. We don't have a guest bedroom now, but when we do in a year, I don't want to have to buy a new one! Maybe when we move into a more permanent place we can better evaluate.

granola catholic said...

Barbara,

One question- are your kids using all the outside toys? In my opinion we use 20% of our stuff 80%. Before you get a shed you might ask your kids what they want to keep.

granola catholic said...

Jackie,

If you love it and it makes your life better then I say keep it. If it is real pretty quilt then perhaps you can put it on display. As I tell my kids if it is important - find an important place for it. But it sounds like you have one in mind.

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