Give me neither poverty nor riches, but give me only my daily bread - Proverbs 30:8

Tuesday, June 28, 2011

Got Me Thinking....

There were two blog posts last week that really got me thinking. The first came from Joshua Becker of Becoming Minimalist. In his post, What is Minimalism?, Joshua's simple answer to this question really challenged me. Joshua's explanation is simply, "I am intentionally trying to live with only the things that I really need."

Why did this challenge me so much? Because I'm not there yet. I still surround myself with plenty of things I don't really need. If you know me at all, and most of you don't, I hope that you would see in me a desire to live intentionally and with integrity. Yet this (intentionally living with only things I need) is an area I fall short in.

I have intentionally cleared out much of my clutter and made great progress. But like many others, I don't live alone, nor do I live with aspiring minimalist, so I live with other people's clutter. After reading Joshua's simple definition, I am challenged to either stop calling myself a minimalist, or get more intentional about it.

The second post that really spoke to me came from Leo Babauta of mnmlist. His most recent post The Just in Case Syndrome was spot on for me. How many things am I still holding onto just in case?

I could probably start a series of things I find and realize I'm holding on to just in case. I've been in my fair share of weddings, and I have held on to one bridesmaid dress just in case my girls want me to dress up and dance around with them (we've done this all of 2 times in their 4 and 6 years of life).

Much of my just in case syndrome comes from the fact that we have moved around quite a bit in the past 4 years ~ 5 moves, 4 states, 5 houses. No two houses are a like, and many of my just in case items have proven to be useful at some time or another. But it looks like we are here for more than just a year, quite possibly several years, so I don't need to keep things just in case.

I'm curious, is it just me or did these posts resonate with anyone else?


  1. Jill, I hadn't read these posts until you mentioned them here, but now that I have, they resonate with me, as well. I am especially struck by Becker's comment on "duplicity." I find it hard to imagine a life where I act the same in all situations; I'm not even sure that would be healthy! Another definition of minimalism struck me even deeper recently, though, and it was from Untitled Minimalism:
    But, I definitely want to work on packing light! And "just in cases" in general.

  2. I recently de-cluttered my life of the "just in case" party serving dishes. Why on earth did I think I needed 2 trifle dishes? Then we hosted a party on the Fourth of July. All of the "just in case" worries haunted me leading up to the party. And what happened? Nothing! The party was a great success even though I used a nice salad/mixing bowl as a serving dish instead of those "just in case" dishes.