I easily spent over $3,000 on compact discs between the ages of 12 and 22. Do you remember Compact Discs? CDs? That’s right.
I just sold and/or donated 185 of my used CDs back to a local music store. Many of them were singles and soundtracks from the 1990’s.
My husband thinks I lack a sense of nostalgia for so easily giving away my childhood stuff as we de-clutter our home for a baby. I just no longer desire to have “stuff” I don’t consistently use. If I haven’t looked at the item in five years, I obviously don’t need it.
I imagine a life where I could pack everything I own (excluding furniture) into one car and know that I have everything I need. Stuff stresses me out. The mall makes me physically ill. I recently learned that the chemicals that exude from the products sold at the kiosks can actually make people feel ill.
What is the psychology behind needing to hold onto our stuff? Maybe it’s fear of forgetting important details of one’s life. My husband has an excellent memory and in some small way he may attribute that to holding on to objects that remind him of those memories. My memory is not so great, and I don’t mind throwing things out at all. Is there a correlation? Maybe. Maybe not.
All I know is, stuff is weighing my down. We’ve made four trips to our local donation store and with each trunk full of crap we unload from our lives, I feel a little lighter. Nothing beats the feeling of letting go of excess.
I know in my heart that I will still remember my most treasured memories whether I have everything or nothing. My parents had a fire before I was born and lost everything except their cats. It was extremely hard to adjust at the time, but they learned a lesson about “stuff” that few of us will ever truly understand—it doesn’t matter.
I don’t mind if I never go to a mall again. That feels like freedom to me.