In the last 25 years, I’ve moved 10 times. Yes, 10. And what I’ve learned over the course of all of these changes in location is that it’s easy to get caught up with all the “stuff” we have. We, as humans, tend to hold onto things, material things, because of what they mean to us rather than whether or not they serve any useful purpose in our lives.
Case in point: do you own a pair of jeans (or any other clothing item for that matter) in your closet that you used to wear in high school, that no longer even fit you, but you can’t seem to let them go because you’re emotionally attached to them? Or maybe you have a piece of furniture that you stub your toe on every time you walk past it, yet you can’t quite get to the point where you sell it or give it away because you’re afraid of what will happen when you do.
Holding on to these types of items is kind of like hoarding. Before you know it, you’ve accumulated all of these things that don’t serve any real and useful purpose, so they begin to get in your way. First, they fill up your extra rooms, your extra space. Then they spill into the hallway where, what used to be a clear path from the kitchen to the bedroom now becomes a tiny trail that must be tip-toed through or else things will get knocked off their piles, leaving you unable to move due to the avalanche around you.
While it’s only natural to get attached to certain things in our lives, stuff is just stuff. It’s nothing more than an inanimate object that we’ve given a meaning to, a material possession that we’ve become attached to. We’ve assigned it a value based on the role it played at some point in our lives and become fearful of what would happen if we broke that attachment by removing it from our world.
However, it’s not the physical items in our lives that are most important, it’s the other things. It’s our family, our friends, our clients, our inner heart and passion that carry the most weight. These are the things that we’ll remember most when our time on earth has come to an end. These are the things that we’ll look back on fondly and be happy that we cherished, giving them the time they were worth.
So here’s my suggestion: think about how long it would take you to move. (If you really have to think about the answer, it’s too long.) Then, remember that stuff is just stuff. It’s the people in your life, the happiness you create along the way, that you can take with you, wherever you may go.
In other words, let go of the things in your life that don’t really matter and focus on the things that do. They’re what’s most important anyway. The rest is just stuff.