When “Stuff” Weighs You Down | The Simplicity Project

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So, Laura and I (Becky) are on a new mission; a mission to declutter our homes, business, and lives. We are calling it The Simplicity Project (#UpNoPaSimplify).

I predict it will be a freeing process.

My inspiration to lose the excess baggage in my life and “pare down” actually started a couple of years ago when I reconnected with a classmate and dear friend, BA Norrgard.

BA is a hoot and an incredibly inspiring woman. She is also a Tiny Houser; someone who has chosen to live Tiny and trade possessions for experiences.

I became progressively more intrigued by her chosen way of life (which is also her profession) when I had the honor of interviewing her several times for magazines.

Tiny House guru, BA Norrgard

Something that I distinctly remember her telling me was this; “You learn to look at possessions with different eyes and make choices based on that realization.”

BA went on to share that says she now looks at her possessions with these criteria in mind; does it have a purpose, is it a necessity, or is it beautiful or a keepsake? The rest is just “stuff.” And stuff ties you down. You have to maintain it, find room for it, and tote it around with you if you move.

In that moment, I was all in.

I don’t intend to run out and get my own Tiny House (yet), but I do completely understand how freeing it will be to do more because I own less.

And as someone who had spent the last three decades raising a family in a little more than a thousand square feet, I knew what it was like to have too much stuff in my house.

But it wasn’t until these last few months that I tackled decluttering and simplifying with new fervor. And it felt good.

How extreme is my “de-junking?” A recent email newsletter from UpNoPa supporter Deb Hess made me giggle;

“I just learned about an Italian New Year’s Eve tradition that sounds far more interesting than making resolutions. The coming of the new year is celebrated by throwing old pots, pans, clothes, appliances, even furniture out the window. It’s meant to symbolize “letting go” of past unhappiness to prepare yourself for the future. What a wonderful way to greet the new year – unless you get hit by someone’s old couch!”

My downsizing and simplifying haven’t been that extreme…but pretty close!

When “Stuff” Weighs You Down

My take-aways from both Deb and BA’s words of wisdom are these facts:

  1. Releasing the old is healthy and necessary.
  2. Clutter causes anxiety and we should no longer keep the things that are no longer serving us or bringing us joy.
  3. There is no perfect time, tub, tote or organizer; decluttering and simplifying is a very mindful and Intentional process. Pretty bins and hangers can’t fix the fact you are keeping shoes you never wear or clothes that no longer fit!
  4. Clutter and excess weren’t created in a day so it won’t go away in a day either. Decluttering and simplifying the right way can take six months to a year (or more!)

This process may sound daunting and too-big-to-tackle, but let me assure you it’s not.

All this month Laura and I will be digging deep, sharing our own personal endeavors through UpNoPa’s Simplicity Project. Join us?

We can do this! We got this!

If you want a little extra inspiration and guidance, check out Laura’s recent post, Why Decluttering Matters and 5 Reasons to Simplify Your Life.

Onward and UPward!

When Stuff Weighs You Down | The Simplicity Project

Becky Flansburg | Up North Parent | Parenting Website in MinnesotaBecky is an “old-ish” mom of “young-ish” kids who thinks bacon is the world’s most perfect food. She is a veteran blogger, freelance writer, virtual assistant and project manager for the non-profit children’s literacy event, Multicultural Children’s Book Day. She is also a proud mom to her amazing 12-year-old daughter Sara and 15-year-old son Jake. Parenting a tween and a teen is a challenge, but she truly believes that being a mom is the Best.Thing.Ever. When she is not hiking (#plussizehiker), reading, selling on eBay, playing with her pets or working on a story for the various magazines she writes for, you can find her on her main blog, Franticmommy. Connect Becky on social media: Twitter, Pinterest, Instagram, and Facebook!

6 thoughts on “When “Stuff” Weighs You Down | The Simplicity Project

  1. I agree with you clutter does cause for anxiety. I hate clutter. I have gone into retail stores and some of them are even cluttered with just too much with no organization.

  2. Stuff completely weighs you down! For the longest time, I have sadly dreaded coming home. It was just all too much! Now that we’ve really re-evaluated our stuff, I LOVE coming home. You can actually see our spaces! Good luck with the process. It’s totally worth it!

  3. […] Sell So Much Stuff, The Kids Think They are Next– There is nothing wrong with downsizing. I read something once that stated the average family has $1500 worth of un-used and sellable items in their home. I think it’s more. I took some of my clothes into a consignment boutique and sold them. We had multiple garage sales, sold items on eBay, reduced monthly bills and got creative with gift buying. I’ve also had great luck with Facebook Garage Sale Groups for selling unwanted items from around the house. If you want my thoughts on clutter and to experience my Simplicity Project, check out this article that I wrote on Up North Parent. […]

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