12 Comments

  1. You make a very good point about concepts. Sometimes I think it’s okay to have an attachment to a particular object. Some objects do bring sentimental value. I allow myself to keep my very favorite shirts for instance but I have let go of any that don’t mean anything to me or that I just don’t need. Having said that, the ability to detach oneself from desires such as objects is paramount to obtaining the peace that comes with a simple life. I truly had no idea how good it would feel until I became a minimalist. Simple life is good.
    Keep up the writing and your journey. You will grow to love the concept even more with every step.

    • Thank you for the kind words. What I love the most about minimalism is how it re-purposes old teachings. I will try to keep my writing and also try to keep up to date with your blog whenever I can. Have a great evening!

  2. To answer your question, yes, I am too attached to my possessions, but am trying
    to learn to let go. And, excellent articles like
    this really help. Hope to read more from you.
    Keep writing!

    • Thank you for your words of encouragement and I’m glad my article helped you a little. Changing your mindset does take a while. And, I will definitely keep writing!

  3. Dez

    Loved your thoughtful post. I think we all have “blue polo shirt” issues to some extent, but I do believe that some objects are worthy of keeping.

    I ask myself these questions:

    1. Is it unique, and of great sentimental and/or tangible value? Obviously, a sack of gold coins would be worth keeping, especially if you are waiting for the price of gold, or the value of each antique coin, to rise. Likewise, the quilt made for you by Grandma with her own two hands is also worth keeping — it is unique, was made just for you by Grandma, it reminds you to think fondly of Grandma each time you see it, and it is useful because it can warm you in your bed.

    2. Do I use it often, or predictably? I only use my turkey roaster on holidays, but I keep it because I need it for a specific purpose on holidays. Is it a kitchen gadget I used once or twice, have had for awhile but never used again, like holiday-themed cookie cutters? To the thrift store they go. The plates I use daily? Of course I keep those. Do I need a dinner service for twenty? No. If I ever do, I can rent it.

    3. Is it irreplacable? For someone my age, Dad’s World War Two medals take up little space in my drawer but much space in my heart, and can never be replaced.. Dad’s blankets, bought at Sears, take up much space in closets and little space in my heart. They were the same blankets that millions of other people bought at Sears. Off to charity they went. Back to the “great sentimental value” question: my Dad’s clothes went to charity, with the exception of his favorite hat and a sports-team jacket he adored. Likewise, I gave almost all of my hippie clothes away, with the exception of a half-dozen iconic items. Someday, I may just simply take a picture of those things and give them to a retro store — except for my leather jacket.

    • I agree with you on the leather jacket. Always keep the leather jacket. I actually think these are three important questions to ask yourself for every item in your house because some things are really worth keeping like your dad’s World War Two medals. Maybe a more radical minimalist might not agree but I think that for anyone that just wants to de-clutter a specific room they have had trouble getting started on these 3 guidelines are awesome. Thank you for the ideas and I’m glad you enjoyed the post.

  4. I use the maxim coined by William Morris of the Pre-Raphaelite Brotherhood. “Have nothing in your houses that you do not know to be useful or believe to be beautiful”. On that basis the turkey baster and Grandma’s quilt can stay but the books that have been read, the superfluous crockery and and the gastley collection of knick knacks can go. The knick knack you believe to be beautiful can now be seen by you in all its glory every day because it is no longer hiding behind all the ones you kept because you thought you ought to.

  5. Lorinda

    The general concept of….
    If I can keep this in mind, I think I can finally let go of some duplicates and keep only the minimal amount required to get the job done.
    Thank you for the insightful post.

  6. […] homes. To us a home is where the heart is and the heart can be very transplantable in our case. Like Marco’s blue polo shirt in the post I linked to yesterday, the difference ii a polo shirt v the polo shirt. We are happy […]

  7. Anonymous

    So, if I get rid of something with which I think I am attached to, I won’t hate myself? In other words, I will like myself better because my rooms look and feel prettier and free of clutter? Yes, I need more help with this, but your ideas seemed to hit home!

    • I wouldn’t say it’s a question of hating yourself more or less. Reducing your attachment to objects reduces the amount of things you associate happiness with. Like this, if ever you lose that object you cherished you won’t feel that pain of losing it. This is a trick the stoics would use. I don’t suggest you do this with your human relationships because as Aristotle says: “Man is by nature a social animal”.

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