What truly makes you happy, MORE stuff or BETTER stuff?
For some people, looking around at all they ‘own’ makes them feel happy, successful and surrounded by things that bring them joy to see and touch. Others may have a completely different emotion, thinking 'It’s too MUCH! Now I have to make room for that stuff, clean it, insure it, safeguard it, and repair that stuff’ and feel quite overwhelmed. There's a new movement that has really taken off, called 'slow' #SlowLiving #SlowFashion, #SuntainableLiving. The intention is to buy LESS and buy BETTER.
From Sharon Stuart the CEO of BedVoyage; these are my opinions, they have changed and formed over the years!
In the past, I loved having all the proper table settings for any party, theme or ethnicity of food, whether I was serving sushi or Mexican food, I had all the right dishware. If I had an event to go to, I wanted just the right outfit (shoes, purse and coat) to wear to that special event so that I felt very put together, oh and the jewelry, so many options! In my home, I felt joy when I had the perfect lamp or piece of art for that particular corner of the room, and was overjoyed with a change of bedding and accessories for every season. I liked OPTIONS and the more the better! I did stray from that when it came to furniture, buy quality and you only have to buy it once. I still have the beautiful dining set and buffet that I bought 30 years ago and I use it every day. Ever since I was a young adult, I decided I wanted to buy timeless furniture that was heavy, well built and high quality. Yes, it was expensive, but when you decide to buy quality you literally can pass it down to your children. But I regret to say that I was not so thoughtful when it came to clothes, jewelry, kitchen appliances, dishes and the like.
I've noticed a big change in my life, as I've moved and downsized a few times over the last 5 years. I truly want LESS stuff, its not fun to box and unbox your same belongings over and over, so I've made the conscious decision to downsize. This means that there literally is nowhere to put all the stuff, therefore I must purge.
How to Decide What is Essential, and What is Not?
You might recall the old adage of ‘if you haven’t used it in 2 years, you don’t need it’ and I’m now down to one year. If I didn’t need it during a whole year of seasonal changes, then I really won’t miss it. I've decided its time to pare down, and it’s been surprisingly liberating to donate and gift many of my things over the last few years, including furniture. I feel somehow ‘lighter’ and less weighed down by all the stuff. I realized I didn't need, nor wear, the 38 pairs of shoes I had, or the 27 coats. Seriously, who needs 27 coats!? Maybe just 4 or 5…! I feel that I've really learned firsthand that more does not equal better. This may have come with my age, thinking about retirement someday, my downsizing, and certainly with the conscious decision to spend my dollars more wisely. While giving things away, I couldn't help mentally adding up the money spent on something that I no longer want. So now, before I purchase, I ask myself a few questions:
- How often will I use this item?
- Can I use a different item instead? (that I already own)
- Can I use this money in a better or more sustainable way?
This forces me to think longer about whether I really want to find space in my home for this item. If I decide I do, then I may think about another item that needs to leave in exchange for this item. I'm actually enjoying this little game I play with myself, and its helping me make better decisions!
A Company that BedVoyage Admires:
When thinking about your jewelry box and what you can and can't live without; consider buying some pieces from Sena Goods. Jeri Sena founded the company with her passion for architecture, jewelry and art. She decided to merge her interests into creating beautiful, sustainable jewelry. Her site states 'luxe & artisan jewelry crafted by hand in a Denver small batch studio' and I had the privilege of interviewing her and learning more about her company. I was quite impressed with how Jeri started out by crafting her wares with thrifted materials. She shopped estate sales, disassembled her finds and then created gorgeous one-of-a-kind jewelry. 20 years later, she still strives to source fair-trade gems and stones for her sustainable designs. You can watch our interview here and connect with her @senagoods or on her site https://senagoods.squarespace.com/
At Home During Covid; a Good Chance to Clean out Your Home:
I think one interesting outcome of being at home for weeks on end during Covid19, is that we can do some spring cleaning and reassess the stuff in our homes. Poking around in closets, garages, drawers and cupboards allows you to take a hard look at your stuff. If you've tossed items in the back, so there's room for more often used items; that’s your first clue! Anything thrown in the back is telling you you don't use it, and its time to consider donating or gifting to someone else. I looked around and started boxing items that my daughter may want to use to set up her own apartment or home someday. I don’t need 5 cookie sheets, 6 casserole dishes, 2 toasters, you get the point. It feels good to set her up so that when she ventures out broke, like all young adults, she won’t have to spend her valuable dollars on things like that?
Maybe its time to define what's important to you (essential) and what is not. It feels great.
Enter to win our giveaway of a gorgeous Sena Goods necklace made with Milk Quartz, Coral, Citrine and Malachite and a BedVoyage 100% Bamboo Duvet and Euro Shams! go to @bedvoyage and enter before April 17!