As I looked out at my packed-to-the-ceiling apartment, each square inch stuffed with stuff and no place to walk, I realized that my claim to minimalism was fiction. Granted, I had just downsized from a 3-bedroom house that included an attached garage, laundry room, outdoor shed, and a 3-season porch to a 1-bedroom apartment with a nook. I had already gotten rid of a considerable number of items in preparation for the move. Yet, this was a wake up call. That house had a ridiculous amount of storage. And so, as a human being, I stored stuff in it. Agility equipment, lawn care, dog stuff, clothes, accessories, outdoor gear. I tried not to, but it’s a natural tendency to fill up the available space.
Now, burdened with finding a place for everything, I realize I have an amazing opportunity to gain even more freedom that I originally thought. The dog training and agility equipment I was clinging to hadn’t been used in months, and if I asked myself critically, it wasn’t truly necessary to train my dogs. I could be resourceful. The one or three pieces of extra furniture were decorations for people I did not host. They could go. The nick nacks and books I hadn't read in ages could be parted with. Time to turn over another leaf.
The biggest, and most painful wake up call of all was carrying all of this STUFF (I really want to use a more crude word than that) up three flights of stairs in trip after trip after trip. Each expedition up the stairs I proclaimed, “I don’t need THIS!!” Also, my back, legs, and arms HURT. Physically a reminder of my choice to keep all of this stuff. Well, message received. Time to downsize even further.