Never underestimate the importance of removing stuff you don’t need.
Encouragement provides us with motivation to persevere. It invites us to dream dreams of significance for our lives. And it begs us to work diligently with optimism and promise.
Overcoming the pull of consumerism is a difficult challenge regardless of our stage in life. Simplicity requires encouragement. To that end, I hope you will find motivation in these articles below.
Each post was intentionally chosen to inspire simplicity in your life. For maximum effect, find a quiet moment this weekend and enjoy them with a fresh cup of coffee or tea.
How Minimalism With a Family is Possible (& Life-Changing!) | Wellness Mama by Wellness Mama. If minimalism with a family seems impossible, here’s a thought: don’t families with kids need it more than anyone else?
Save Money and Reset Your Financial Life With a Shopping Ban | The New York Times by Susan Shain. A shopping ban is not necessarily a renouncement of worldly possessions or a declaration that buying stuff is bad; it’s a pause that helps you establish your priorities.
Self-storage: How Warehouses For Personal Junk Became a $38 Billion Industry | Curbed by Patrick Sisson. One in 11 Americans pays for space to store the material overflow of the American dream.
Bye-Bye Stuff, Hello Minimalism | The Medium by Ye Chen. I used to think that the more I have, the happier I will be. I bought a lot of unnecessarily expensive things, believing that all those possessions would increase my self-worth and lead to a happier life.
I found that getting rid of things was the easy part (I thought it would be harder than it was to part with certain things). The difficult part for me was not going out shopping to replace the items I had just gotten rid of. Or worse yet, go get something to occupy the space the previous item held. Crazy huh.
Nice read. I like the blogs.
Ann Stokman says
I’m so incredibly annoyed by the anti-self-storage coverage by ignorant people. A huge hunk of the self storage falls into very legitimate categories. Business inventory for online businesses are often kept in self-storage. Many small contractors have all their equipment there. And people who live in the walkable neighborhoods with little to no garage space have their boats, ATVs, jet skis, motorcycles, etc., there. Some people store their “project” car that they’re rebuilding in such a place. It’s not wasted money—it’s money given to hubbies. Then there are the growing number of storage-by-the-box for urban families in tiny apartments who can’t keep their entire year’s clothes in their closets, or who like their Christmas decor but realistically have no room for them, and it’s worth the $10/box/month to store those things.
I’ve used storage myself—emptying a garage of its tools for staging before a move, and summer storage at a far-away college, where I paid $90 for 3 months to keep a loft ($500 materials), my winter clothes, and my mini fridge ($150 to repurchase).
This was a great read for what is going on in my life these days. I’ve downsized from a 3 bedroom house with full basement and garage to a 1 bedroom condo. Everyday I’m throwing more into boxes for charity as I learn to downsize and let go of these things I once held valuable. It has not been easy since I’m a hobby person, but I’m figuring things out. Learning to let go of what really isn’t important to me. I’ve downsized my Storage already and I will again sometime soon. Great article. Storage is definitely practical though for a lot of people, but…. I’ve recently watched some horders episodes and ? I do think there is a serious dark side to this ‘need’ for all of this storage space.
Nah. It’s a waste!
Diann Bonkowski says
I love reading your little articles.
I love the weekend reads! I look forward to this email every week.
Thanks Joshua ?
There are always so many good and inspiring reads everywhere. No end of inspiration to keep us on track. Thank you.
Outstanding! We are not what we own on the outside, rather what we become on the inside. Took your suggestion and prepared a pot of tea with intention while I read your Weekend Reads!
In all the articles and all the suggestions, I don’t recall you ever
addressing the “heart” of this problem
of trying to fill our lives with stuff…..
There is an emptiness that can only be
filled in one way…… no matter how much “stuff” we buy and collect……
The problem is Spiritual, not physical…
and the only solution is a personal
relationship with the Lord Jesus Christ.
All the books , save one, will never
solve the empty, gnawing hunger
that begs to be filled. I hope you try
this…….. you will not be disappointed.
Not everyone believes in Jesus Christ. Jews, Muslims, and people of many different faiths, or no faith at all, may have a desire to live with less and focus on what is truly important to them. Please realize that the world we live in includes people who may not share your beliefs.
Sorry Sandra, I disagree. Over the years Joshua has many times addressed why we buy…..is it feeling empty or something else. It’s different for everyone. Good posting Amy, thank you.
well said xxxx
I am a Christian and believe both my faith has helped me and also reflection on being greedy and wasteful and not taking responsibility for overspending so its inter linked for me, and not spending whats not mine ie the banks is very irresponsible especially when its a want over a need, i am trying to save as i am very tired of debt its like a horrid chain around my neck, and today we don,t seem to face upto reality, i need to be content and focus on need rather than want
I agree with you Sandra 100%. The only peace that surpasses all understanding ;)
I enjoyed the article about the shopping ban until I clicked the link on Flanders’ book. What’s wrong with this picture? You promote minimalism, then encourage us to
BUY BUY BUY. If we are to be serious about minimalism, try the library!!!!!!
They are giving you a choice to buy the book if you want. Some people may need to read & re-read, and may want to own the book for future reference. Or buy it and then share it with friends or family, or read it & then donate it. It doesn’t have to be a bad thing to buy a book.
This has to be one of the best ‘Weekend Reads’ you have done. Every article was perfect.
Agree one of the best
I agree with Michael H–acquiring is an addiction, one which I am slowly, but surely, being delivered from; too bad you were not around about 25 years ago! My life would have been literally light years different than it has been. It would take too long to describe the pain that acquiring has caused in my life. I will focus on being thankful that I still have a little time (I am in the last leg of my race) to try and “turn this ship around”.
Thank you, and may God continue to use you in this redemptive way.
Out on a hike the other day (seeing the much plastic on the ground and in the creek) my daughter asked “What happened to all the garbage from Robert the Bruce’s time?” Had another little talk about minimalism and ecology – and why we don’t need more than we have…
Michael H. says
The numbers on self storage are outrageous, but I don’t find them surprising. It’s really just the natural outgrowth of a few hundred million people addicted to acquiring material possessions. All of that stuff has to go somewhere. Apparently, getting rid of it or not acquiring it in the first place are not options people are considering.
laura ann says
Self storage has a place: remodeling, moving into smaller place to see what you need to get rid of , military or business inventory. Several folks I know who are older (older people need to downsize anyway, unlike inlaws who had a mess of junk we tossed) Several older couples I know pay on units for stuff they don’t need or can’t fit in their houses, garages, full of excess furniture, etc. Cars sit outside. We are retired and have drastically downsized household items slowly for over a year while waiting for a two bdr. apt. vacancy. If a spouse dies, one becomes single, like two friends who had massive amount of items to go thru as they never did routine purges like I do, taking a long time to sort and sell when they could be enjoying other activities. Franchises are building these units all over town and some are a corporation of many storage facilities in the S.E. Prices for rent have skyrocketed in recent years. Much of the stuff will be tossed when people move, default or die. family members don’t want it.