I once told my dad that when he died we were going to have a huge dumpster outside his house.
I recommend against saying things like that to your family. Even for me, it didn’t take long to realize how mean that sounded but it seems I still haven’t quite learned my lesson. My wife constantly reminds me that I need to bite my tongue instead of telling the kids I can’t wait to get rid of their toys.
Sometimes I’m a slow learner.
I know that if your family members are resistant to letting go of things, then the best way to convince them is usually to show them. You have to first purge your own excess stuff and hope they see the benefits of owning less. Then they will want to follow suit. Easier said than done.
We can look at someone else and wonder why on earth they’re keeping something as useless as a spoon collection. Yet, it never occurs to us to get rid of the dozens of shot glasses we accumulated in college collecting dust on a shelf. In the back of our mind we know we should get rid of those shot glasses, but it’s a lot easier to point out someone else’s junk than to get rid of our own.
Here’s a suggestion and I’ll try to follow my own advice.
The next time you’re looking at someone else’s stuff you think they could easily live without, instead of pointing it out to them, take a look around at your own things and find something you can purge. Keep doing that until you can’t get rid of anything else. Chances are, you’re still not done.
Hopefully, those around you will see you spending less time taking care of all that extra stuff. They will notice the extra space and free time you have that comes from owning less and will want that too. They might even ask for your help.
Copyright Dave Lubke and www.davelubke.com, 2022
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