I've been trying to be more minimalist lately. I deleted the vast majority of blogs I follow in my RSS feed (I only follow 5 now). One of the blogs I still follow is Far Beyond the Stars by Everett Bogue. Everett is a guy who lives his life with a ridiculously small number of possessions (less than 100). I really resonate with his message but I find that I also conflict with it.
When I moved to CA (and then back again) moving all my stuff was a major expense and hassle. I'm currently living in a condo that's a little over 1000 sq ft and I don't know how my girlfriend could move in with me because there wouldn't be enough room for both of our stuff. Just our clothes alone would be a problem. I have in my bedroom one closet and two tall dressers filled with clothes. I have three drawers filled with t-shirts. This is clearly ridiculous. There is absolutely no reason why two people couldn't live comfortably in my condo. Especially if we're a couple sharing a bedroom.
I've started getting rid of things. I took a bunch of books to Frugal Muse but they didn't take many of them. I'll probably offer up some of my computer books at my next PHP Meetup. Some of the stuff I feel like I'd have a hard time getting rid of are my DVDs and CDs. I'm not sure why the idea of getting rid of them bothers me so much. There are other things that I wouldn't want to get rid of like my pinball machine. Ideally, I'd have more pinball machines but I'm not sure why I have this desire to accumulate things.
I would have a lot more freedom without this weird desire to accumulate stuff. I'd be content living in my condo (which is paid off) instead of looking to buy a house and taking on a mortgage. I'd also have more money because I wouldn't be spending it on stuff I don't need. I live within my means, but I have almost no savings. There is no reason I shouldn't be sitting on piles of money because I make a good salary and I don't have a ton of fixed monthly expenses. I'd like to start a business of my own, but I can't right now because of my lack of savings and my dependence on my salary.
Clearly, I need to keep taking steps towards reducing what I spend and what I have. I'd like to have my girlfriend move in when her lease is up in 6 months so ideally, I'll need to get rid of half of what I have in my currently full condo. This is something I can do and I feel like I'll be a much better person for it on the flip side.
Published September 3, 2010