01 September 2017

I’m living in the upsidedown. \ So tired of the real world now.
— Shaun Frank, Upsidedown

When I moved back to the US this August I filled an entire car with boxes, bags, and other miscellaneous items. While unpacking I said, out-loud, to myself: “Do I really have another pair of pants?”1 That was my wakeup call.

At the time, I had so much non-essential stuff that it made me physically unhappy. I felt like I couldn’t escape. I try to espouse minimalism but in this case, I felt like a hypocrite. I hang on to T-Shirts because I’m afraid that someday I may want them or I keep around some random cable or left over screws because I think it might prove useful in the future. The issue is that this default state is difficult to escape. It requires more thought to dispense of something rather than just hold onto it, and it’s for this reason that I’ve amassed too much stuff.

So I’ve decided to get rid of it all. Anything that’s not essential. Anything that I don’t use every day or thereabouts, I’m getting rid of.2 I’m tired of being surrounded by clutter and constantly fearing that disposing of something now might mean trouble in the future.

Now, I just want to cut3 and keep cutting until I think I can’t anymore. Then, and only then will I have just the right amount of stuff in my life.

So goodbye to those shoes I wear once per season, and to that sweater, I thought I might wear next year if the temperature was just right.

I’m going back to basics.

  1. At that time I owned 23 pairs. Too many, I know. 

  2. I have carved out some special exceptions (i.e. certain books). 

  3. Cut in the sense of removing items from my life.