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Saturday, June 2, 2012

208 Things!

I just counted my stuff. I have 208 things.

If that sounds a little strange, let me fill you in. For the past four years, I've been engaged in a personal challenge to reduce my possessions to 100 things - you know, just to see if I can do it.

I began by putting most of my possessions up for sale. I gave some of my favorite things to friends & family, scanned old photos & journals, & the rest got donated to charity. Then I went off to travel the world.

When I arrived at my first stop, I had about 350 things. Not bad for a first try, eh? Each time I go to a new place, I leave another pile of things behind me - peeling the onion, I call it. It feels so good to slough off unnecessary stuff.

Not to say that it's easy to do. It took me a couple of stops to get rid of my collection of brightly colored paper clips, & I'm still holding on to my devil duckies pencil toppers. I suppose they will go eventually, but I'm not ready to give them up just yet. It's all part of the journey.

Over the past few years, I've been learning what I don't really need (a stack of read-write DVDs; a stapler), what I really can't live without (my Kindle; a good headlamp), & what I like having around just because it makes me happy (my magic wand, for example).

I've just recently made another move & thought this would be a good opportunity to check in with my stuff. I counted a total of 208 things. 208.

When I think about that, I realize that I've accomplished quite a lot already. I've not only reduced my possessions to a very small number. I've also greatly squelched my habit of acquiring more stuff - a great achievement. Of course, being a traveler helps with that. Whenever I'm tempted to buy something I don't really need, I just think about having to carry it around with me, & that usually does the trick.

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