Benefit 1: Rooting Out Chaos
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One benefit of downsizing is rooting out disorder and chaos, but to do that we first need to wipe out mistaken thinking or lies we believe about our “stuff.” Here are a few examples:
- That was a gift. I can’t give or throw that away.
- I paid good money for that. It’s wasteful to get rid of it.
- My children might want or value this someday, so I’ll store it for them.
- I’m too old to change, and too tired to tackle my messes.
Downsizing helps us think through why we accumulated so much stuff. There are basic types of people who struggle. The “Messies”—who may or may not be lazy, but they aren’t organized—have so much stuff stacked up, they don’t even know what they have.
Some “Collectors” allow collections to take over their lives, budgets, and large chunks of time that God may want spent other ways.
“Legacy guardians” view themselves as protectors of family heritage; but “the kids” typically don’t want most things saved for them.
“House-party consumers” buy because it’s expected, and they don’t want to disappoint—even if they don’t need the items.
“Just-because-I-love-it” people buy beautiful things, but their purchases are soon unseen or unappreciated, in piles or on crowded shelves.
The “Save-it-for-someday” person has multiple duplicates of things on shelves—but who needs 20 pairs of scissors?
Having too much stuff also brings consequences like frustration, guilt, regret, embarrassment, fear, and lost opportunities. A benefit of downsizing is rooting out this chaos so stress can also be removed.
Marcia Ramsland’s Simplify Your Life: Get Organized and Stay that Way, and Kathi Lipp’s The Clutter Free Home: Making Room for Your Life, offer help with downsizing.
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