Owning less as the new pursuit of happiness
Are you overwhelmed by all the stuff in your home? You are not alone. In 2014, the average US American owned 300,000 items. 300,000! That’s a massive amount and yet, it doesn’t seem make Americans happy. They were only ranked 19 of the World’s Happiest Countries 2019. Is owning less the answer?
Numerous studies have shown that owning more does not improve how we feel. The urge to keep up with the Joneses has increase over the years and yet, the excitement over new items in our home wears off quickly. We buy and accumulate new things to make us happy.
1. More time for your friends and family
You’d be surprised the number of people we meet who don’t have friends over… because of the state of their home. They feel embarrassed. Owning less gives you more time for the people and lets you deepen your friendships, improve relationships with your family.
2. More time for what you want
A former client of ours, the adventurous C and her husband decided to embark on trip of a lifetime. They travelled from South Africa to Egypt with their motorbike! That’s right, just one motorbike for the two of them and they only took what fitted in the custom designed carry boxes on the side. You can find plenty of inspiration for travelling on a bike on the Horizons Unlimited travel blog.
3. More money for experiences
We know that spending money on stuff doesn’t buy happiness. Worse, it fills up your shelves and cupboards with item you don’t need and possibly won’t even use regularly. So try this: Rather than buying new things, put the money towards an experience. Put it into your savings account and work yourself up to financial independence.
4. Fewer painful memories
We often work with clients who feel guilty for letting go. It may be that crystal vase, a gift from a relative, or a set of letters from a former lover. Holding on to these items also holds you back from living how you want to live.
5. Less cleaning required
As you move to owning less, you’ll see that your home requires less cleaning and simultaneously, fewer items require regular maintenance. Isn’t take something to be grateful for?
6. More energy
Combing owning less with reducing your waste can give you more energy. BuzzFeed’s video shows how this experience led to healthier eating. She avoided all processed food which comes in the container as its packaging would be considered too many items to bring home.
7. Less to move to a new home
Anybody who every carried moving boxes into a new homes may wonder why this ugly china is still coming along? And shouldn’t that have been donated before the last move? Was it ever unpacked? Just think about the energy you could save when picking up the next set of moving boxes.
As you are looking around your home, which areas could you reduce? Where can you create freedom for the life you want to life?
Until next time,