I feel like I have always struggled with getting rid of things. I have a constant thoughts of I may need that or I spent a lot of money on that. If I have not used it in a year or more, then I likely will not use it and it is not serving my family. For example, I have 5 crock pots. Yes, 5 of various sizes and styles. I use one pretty much daily. The crock pot is an amazing invention and is very important to my family. But 5? Probably not. I have not gotten rid of them because of those thoughts that creep in. Well, in my process for living more intentionally, I have decided to get rid of things that do not serve my family. So, I ask myself as I am organizing and purging an area of my home, “Does this object serve me or my family?” If it doesn’t and it is in good shape, I put it in a box for Good Will, so it can serve someone else well.
I am intrigued by the concept of minimalism, but I am not sure as though I will make it there. However, I do believe that there is something to having freedom from less stuff. It is less to clean, less to organize, and less to manage. This gives you more time to enjoy what is really important to you. People, family, and relationships are really more important and valuable than having 5 crock pots. I am positive about that. I encourage you to look around your home or maybe just a drawer and determine what you need to serve your family. If it is not sentimental or does not serve your family, donate it or give it to someone else.
Now, you also have to control and monitor the stuff that is coming into your home. For some, you may want to buy one thing and remove one thing to keep your stuff more manageable. I am working to become more intentional about my purchases. So, when walking through Target or mindlessly surfing Groupon, I do not just purchase something because it is on sale or is pretty. Again, work in progress. I think to myself, Does this benefit me or my family? If so, I can purchase it. If you cannot say yes immediately to this question, then it may mean do not make this purchase or it may mean you need to think about it longer. Maybe it means talking to your spouse or putting it in your budget.
Another way I have been using this question is to determine where my time should be spent. It is easy to get lost on social media, in news stories, in cleaning, or in anything really. Our minds want and like to be occupied, but we have complete control in how they are being occupied. Ask yourself, is it benefiting me or my family for me to be on social media right now? Maybe the answer is yes. It is okay to give yourself that escape, but set a time limit, so you do not get lost. It happens.
We also have very full lives. Individuals have to balance work, church commitments, volunteers commitments, and family commitments. We cannot say yes to everything and we cannot feel guilty about it. Again, work in progress for myself. Before you instantly say yes to an invitation, determine if it will benefit you or your family. If you work full-time and your children are having a terrible, cranky day, maybe it does not serve your family to go. It may be better for your child to nap or have some one-on-one time with you. That is okay. Take the time to be intentional about are time is spent. Life is very short and we are tasked with more in more in life. Take a moment to stop and smell the roses, so to speak. Give yourself the freedom from stuff and expectations.
Today, I encourage you to set a goal for yourself in terms of improving your life. My personal goal is to be work through all of the stuff in my home that does not serve my family. Determine what that means to you and your family.
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