My family and I are leaving Texas.
Don’t get me wrong, we have loved living in Dallas. There are lots of things to do, lots of restaurants, and our church small group has been awesome. But we have decided that we want to be closer to family for ourselves and our children.
We’ll be heading to Atlanta in June of this year. We’re pretty excited about it. I love Georgia (having lived there three times in my life) and there are lots of things to do in Atlanta while retaining that Southern charm.
With just under six weeks until our move date, we’ve begun packing and organizing things as much as we can. While I don’t necessarily enjoy packing or moving, I have become somewhat good at it after almost 30 moves in my lifetime. One of the biggest challenges to me in the process of moving is reducing the amount of stuff we own.
Don’t get me wrong, I’m not a super minimalist or super into stuff. I have just come to the realization that the more stuff I have, the more money it costs me to move. With a wife, a cat and two small kids who are spoiled by both pairs of grandparents, we have a lot of clutter. So after a long conversation with my wife, we decided to reduce the amount of stuff in our possession by a large amount. The basic rule was that if we had more than one of something or hadn’t used it in a year, we were getting rid of it.
You wouldn’t believe the battles we’ve had not wanting to get of things that don’t matter. Things that haven’t been used in years. T-shirts from middle school. USB Flash Drives that have 512 MB of storage and are corrupted. Things that realistically have no value to us, but we act like have huge emotional investment. But one by one, they’ve been donated or trashed.
While we’re still working hard on packing and going through things, something crazy has happened. As the clutter has disappeared, so have large amounts of stress from our lives. A clean countertop is way better than a cluttered mess of extra mugs and bowls. Having space and clarity to think has been a huge boon to my personal and professional productivity.
So it has me starting to clear up my digital life as well. Why do I need so many social media accounts? Files from 3 jobs ago? Nope. Pictures? Store them in the cloud and get them out of my devices. Domains that have never been used? Sell ’em.
Overall, the benefit for me mentally and physically has been great. I feel better knowing that my digital and physical clutter has been greatly reduced. But it is an ongoing battle. I also have begun to consider applying this to my mental and emotional health as well. I’d love to hear your thoughts and how you have reduced the clutter in your life.