It occurred to me that I’ve written more about the how-to’s and not as much about the motivation for it. So let’s begin at the beginning.
Why would you make the effort to purposefully declutter your belongings?
Here are mine: my personal top five reasons to declutter my stuff and have fewer things.
1. A sense of calm. When a home is crowded with stuff, it goes beyond cozy and starts to look messy. If my home is a mess then I feel overwhelmed and stressed. It’s also incredibly distracting from the people who I really want to be giving my attention to.
2. Personal beliefs. I have a personal conviction to live with less. I enjoy the things I own, but I know there are so many people in the world who are hurting. I don’t want to indulge myself excessively and disregard others who are going without.
3. A desire for experiences to look back on. My husband and I value fun, shared experiences more than having things. It’s also nice that experiences don’t require regular dusting or maintenance. We like to go places. (Hey, I’m in New York this week.)
4. The freedom in flexibility. We could pack up our stuff at any time and move, because there’s just not that much of it. We like to plan where and how we could move overseas at some point in the future. (It’s also one of our motivations for being completely debt-free.)
5. Free time. We don’t spend our weekends taking care of our stuff. We don’t need to.
Related reading: Resisting the Desire to Acquire