Every time I move, I am forced to think about STUFF. My stuff. All the stuff I have to pack up and tote to my next home.
Although I consider myself to be a thrower-awayer and not a keeper when it comes to things like receipts, knick-knacks, ill-fitting clothes, and things I don’t truly love, there’s still just so much stuff.
Minimalism seems to have become a trend over the past five years or so. I’m always seeing videos and shows about people who pared down everything they had in order to have a perfectly curated capsule wardrobe or to move into a “tiny house”.
Now that I’m a freelancer, I read all the time about digital nomads – people whose jobs are entirely internet-based so they can and do work wherever they want.
In addition, I dated a guy once upon a time who was a minimalist in every sense of the word. He had a mattress on the floor in lieu of a bed, a pair of meditation cushions instead of a couch (???), and like two pairs of shoes.
Even though it was unusual, I also found it admirable and considered whether I could be as much of a minimalist as he was. I’d often wonder whether it was materialistic of me to be so attached to “things” when other people seemed to thrive with just the bare minimum.
For example, I love to travel, but packing and unpacking stresses me out because it means that all my stuff is in disarray; not neatly put away as I like it. And living out of a hotel room is nice at first, but after a while I crave all the creature comforts of my own home.
It took me a while, but I finally realized that it’s not materialistic to want to feather my nest and keep beautiful and comforting things around me. It just makes me ME.
Everything I put in my apartment to make it my own has a story. When I look at each item, I remember how I saved up to buy it, how I found it for a song at a thrift store, how my brother gave it to me as a gift, how I found it discarded in an abandoned closet at my old workplace, or how I picked it out of someone’s trash (#shameless). And when I see it all put together, it just feels like home. It’s warm, it’s comforting, and most of all, it’s mine.
So rock on, digital nomads, capsule wardrobe-havers, and tiny house owners. You are badasses and I’ll keep watching YouTube videos about you. But as for me, I’ll be here with my cat on the IKEA couch I bought for $75 on Craigslist covered in one of my seven fuzzy blankets, and there’s nothing wrong with that.