Attachment to "Stuff"
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Riley
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Sat Oct 26, 2019 4:42 am
Why is it that we place so much value on "stuff" and "things"? Does it fill a certain place in our lives? Does it provide a big enough distraction from the things that stress and worry us? Or is it something else?

I already think my husband and I have too much "stuff", and while we donated a large amount of boxes to charity, we still have more stuff than I'd like. Why is that?! Do I really need these things to feel content in life?

Having too much stuff gets my anxiety going when I think about it, yet when I start filling boxes to give to charity, I feel even more anxious. What if the person who gave this to me finds out I just gave it away? What if I change my mind later and decide I really wanted to keep that?

And why, when I tell people to not buy me anything for my birthday or for Christmas, do they gift me with things that will remain in the bottom of a drawer or closet, and collect dust? I love and appreciate that they thought of me, yet a part of me is frustrated that now I have more stuff.

I really have no thoughts on why we have such strong attachments to stuff and things. I'm still trying to figure out my personal answer to that question. But I want to know what your thoughts are on the subject.
LillieRose
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Sat Oct 26, 2019 5:00 am
Oh wow, this is a very good topic. I don't even know where to start, I have so much to say about this.

I do have to point out that I am in a unique position in regard to this, since I was in a position just over four years ago when I basically had to leave all of my "stuff" behind. I also have a wonderful husband who has a very definite attitude towards owning stuff, which is that he doesn't like stuff. XD

That being said, my own story is that I moved to the other side of the world and was allowed to take only one suitcase, which is basically the standard baggage allowance for airlines. Yeah, sure, I know you can ship stuff, etc. but we were moving to the other side of the world, so shipping was not exactly an option we considered at the time.

So, I had the opportunity to start fresh with owning stuff, which really made me re-evaluate my relationship with stuff. I left most of the things that matter to me sentimentally, behind, such as my library, my grandmother's hand crocheted knick-knacks and the expensive china that I inherited from her. These were the "stuff" that mattered to me, because of the emotional attachment. When it came to clothes and other houseware, such as furniture, TV and such, it felt really liberating to leave it all behind.

And even now, after having lived over four years in New Zealand and having moved about a month ago to a new house, I realized that my hubby and I really didn't accumulate much stuff at all. We were done moving in one afternoon and wholly packed everything away by the next day. It felt good.

Granted, we needed to get things like a kettle, toster, plates and dinnerware and some such but even now, we still don't own a heap of stuff and I enjoy this minimalist approach to living. I intend to keep it up.

The stuff that I am attached to and always will be are the few paper books that I have collected over the course of these years, there really aren't many at all but the ones that I do have are either lovely hardback collector's editions or signed books, which I really cherish. For the sake of saving on space, I bought a Kindle and I have the majority of my books on there. I also utilize the library a lot.

Also, my jewellery, which has been gifted to me by very special friends, family and my husband. Out of them, I especially cherish my pounamu (New Zealand greenstone), which was gifted to me by my best friend from New Zealand.

All in all, this is my opinion on owning stuff. But again, like I mentioned in the beginning, I found myself in unusual circumstances which made me re-evaluate my relationship to stuff.

Looking forward to hear other people's opinions. :3

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Riley
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Sun Oct 27, 2019 9:22 pm
That is a unique situation.
I spent last night wondering intermittently, about what I would take with me if I could only fill one standard suitcase of stuff. It was difficult to imagine, I'm not sure how I would have fared if I actually had to do it. But, I can also see how freeing it would be.

A friend just recommended the book, Life Changing Magic of Tidying Up, and I think I'm going to give it a read at some point (hopefully soon).

My husband is already on board about de-cluttering and downsizing our stuff, so now it's only a matter of doing it. I told him it would be a long term project, maybe going room by room.
LillieRose
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Mon Oct 28, 2019 12:36 am
It most certainly was and it was a bit on the hard side to decide what to leave and what to take.

In the interest of making my chances as good as possible with finding a job, I took most of my "good" or new clothes with me. Anything that was well loved and scruffy I left behind. Most of my wardrobe that I put together for my dancing was donated to my dance club. Except the shoes, the shoes I couldn't give up. XD

I also took a fair amount of bedding - sheets, pillowcases and such. And the comforter that my mom bought me.

Since we already had a house sorted out by my brother- and sister-in-law, we were able to pretty much narrow down what will be essential once we arrive to our new life.

I also need to add that my husband is a huge electronics aficionado and builds his own speakers and amplifiers from scratch (literally begins with drawing his own printed circuit boards), so the biggest clutter at the moment is in our spare room or his mancave, if you will. XD

But I let this slide, because most of the stuff in there is tools and bits that he needs for his hobby. :3

I think beginning to de-clutter room by room is a very good idea. Yes

I wish you luck. :3

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Riley
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Mon Oct 28, 2019 1:11 am
Thanks, I think I'll need it. XD

I just checked the book out from the library and I'm several pages in. I haven't hit the "How to" yet, but it's getting there. And it sounds interesting. I like the thoughts behind her method (so far, at least).
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