I have recently been reading a bit more about living with less clutter, this relatively new concept is known as ‘hyper frugality’. I am a fan, but possibly not in the extreme!
I am all for creating experiences above having possessions, but to give away all of my possessions would send me into a spin quite frankly. I can understand the attraction of downsizing, especially at my age and the inevitable empty nest, but to totally discard everything I have gathered over the past fifty years would leave me feeling like I had no identity.
I guess that is the point of frugality, it’s a lifestyle change. I do know of people who have sold up everything, grow their own food, make their own clothes and live practically on the smell of thin air. God knows how they do it. I don’t consider myself to have an overabundance of possessions, but to live without my coffee machine would need some serious consideration.
But, there is certainly an appeal to living more frugally, ‘less is more’ brings a whole new meaning when you’re faced with a life changing illness. It was during this time that I realised that none of this stuff of mine was going to get me through cancer treatment (except maybe my coffee machine).
I had worked hard for my possessions but they were exactly that, possessions, I had never even thought about why I needed them and what encouraged me to own them. Their value was not as meaningful as I thought; I too had been swept up in the belief that if I had these things my life would be better. It made no difference when I was diagnosed; in fact I hated all that junk in my home, it made me panic.
During this time I established what my priorities actually were. Looking for meaning in my stuff wasn’t cutting it, so I had to look elsewhere. For my part, I did a lot of inward looking but I was also fascinated by the rise of the movements associated with the sharing and experience economies.
It’s a pretty new concept and I am on board. It essentially means that we value experiences over possessions. It has definitely got some momentum behind it, with politicians and businesses particularly embracing the well-being culture above consumerism.
The well-being concept is having its day in the sun and I am very excited about that. The shift in our quality of life, sustainability and happiness has got to be something to look forward to and I like the fact that we can all get on board. This is not something that we just leave to the experts.
I already know that I am thinking this way; I value what people do, not what they have, and adopt the same values in my own life.
Big Love Jane x