08 June 2010

Letting Go of Stuff


The past two weeks have been a terrific exercise in letting go. Letting go of expectations in life, letting go of plans that didn't work out, letting go of worries and fears, letting go of demands I put on myself that might not be practical right now. I've also been letting go of belongings which is always incredibly freeing to me.

Over the years I've become more and more simple in my needs and wants and try to keep the amount of things that own me to a minimum. It's been an interesting process weeding through the things I have. It has been a constant trickle for a few weeks now. First it was a few articles of clothing and a couple of tchotckes, then as I started to refresh I began letting go of furniture that was way past it's prime. Some of the furniture had been with me for 10-14 years, through 5 or more homes, lots of relationships, friendships, jobs and life changes. Saying goodbye to things you've enjoyed and that have served you well leaves one open to having to find a replacement.

With change comes the eventuality that whatever you choose to replace what is gone will never be exactly the same as what you had. The new couch may not be as wide for sleeping on, have high sides to curl up in, be exactly the twill fabric that you love. It's so easy to get stuck in a mentality of looking at change as a negative instead of a positive.

It's important to remember that the new couch could be better proportioned for the size of the living room, have firmer cushions, be higher off the ground and more comfortable for long legs, and it can still be some of the things that were great about the old sofa. The new sofa could be even better. The new shelving and storage pieces are going to be better. Everything is going to be better. So important to remember.

It's easy to get stuck in the fear of change rut when we move, end relationships, leave jobs, friends move away, children grow up, children come to us when least expected. But there are always new good things to be enjoyed with change and when we look at things that way, it's refreshing. We learn new things, we have experiences we never could have had in our old scenario and we get to know and enjoy new things and new people. Letting go of old, outdated ways of thinking about ourselves, our life and the things we own allows us to grow, experience more and have more enjoyable relationships in our lives.

Anything I've let go of in the way of belongings that still had usefulness has been donated to good thrift stores where it can go on to benefit others. I've actually thrown almost nothing in the trash. So the things I don't need anymore can go on to bless other people's lives, give them fresh surroundings and experiences.

So I'm letting to, simplifying things, remembering that I'll be even happier with new changes and be able to look at things in new ways. If just moving furniture around in one's home can be so refreshing and give one the sense of a fresh start, imagine what can happen in all other areas of our lives!

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