Simplify My Life
This is an aside from the type of post that I usually write. There’s so much to post that I don’t even know where to begin but I know quite a few of my friends have already been asking me about this … so I’ll try my best to explain.
The past month, I’ve been focusing a lot on what else I can do to upgrade my condo. And I guess to jump to the meat of what I’m trying to say is, as much as I have enjoyed living in my condo, I realize that it has consumed me and ensnared me to a money spending pattern that I really dislike. After a lot of contemplation, I’ve decided to rent my entire condo out and move out. There are many reasons that I am doing this and I hope to explain them in a way that makes sense.
1. Money. I hate money. Actually, that’s not entirely accurate. I hate dealing with large amounts of money over and over again. I don’t mind paying bills, rent, mortgage, etc., but that on top of needing to buy this and that for the home is too much stress. I’m always wondering if I have enough money to buy an extra thing or two and I just don’t like to deal with it. That’s just part one.
2. Money/Giving. Part two of this money issue is that I haven’t been able to give as much as I like. I enjoy supporting the church I go to, donating money to the organization I volunteer at that helps feed the homeless, taking friends out to dinner and paying for their meals, taking my family out to dinner, etc. I’ve noticed that these activities are starting to dwindle because I’m so focused on setting money aside for my condo upgrading.
3. Excessiveness. A couple weeks ago I was walking around my condo and saw many things that I never ever use (or need) anymore. Jump to later on in the week when I’m helping to feed the homeless and only a few of the regular larger group of them show up because it’s raining. I have ten extra jackets at home staying warm and being useless right now. Where is everybody? Are they able to stay dry and warm this week? Do I really need this much stuff that I never use anyway?
4. Splurge. You remember at the end of Napoleon Dynamite where his brother sings that song about loving technology…? That’s me. I am very weak-willed when it comes to buying the next coolest gadget (unless it’s an Apple product but that’s a different story). On top of that, I’ve realized that owning the condo always keeps me thinking of what else I need to buy next…like it owns me. These two forces keep pulling at me to invest more money into upgrading my life with stuff and I’m just over it. Maybe it’s just to make me feel good about myself… I duno
Do you see where I am going with this?
I’m not saying that owning things is bad. I think that it’s a great privilege and blessing to be able to work hard and make money to buy things that you want. I don’t think there’s anything wrong with it and I’m not bashing that at all. I personally find fulfillment and joy when I can use my money in a way that can help other people, and I simply have not been able to do that as freely as I would like in the past few months. Do you have enough money after you give to pay for your bills, mortgage, etc…this month? I hate the thought of being limited or unable to give when I have an opportunity to help someone out.
Now with this in mind, I’m thinking of ways I can put myself in a position to give again. This means renting out my condo and simplifying my life. I have been doing an inventory of the things I need and don’t need and will try to donate, sell or trash all the things I don’t truly need. I’m not doing this out of guilt (although point #3 above may suggest otherwise), but rather out of motivation. I want to get back into a lifestyle where I can give freely. I’m also not doing this to punish myself, but rather to start forming better spending habits that will hopefully stick with me for a long time.
My goal is that once January 1, 2011 rolls around, I will only own 100 items. I have already started selling all of my condo furniture including the super comfortable blue couch, shelves, a few rugs, and yes, even my own bed. There’s still a ways to go to get down to 100 items but I still have a couple months. I have a long journey ahead of me that might get painful at times but I think it will be worth it in the end.
Let me know what you think. I had three friends already call me telling me that I’m crazy (and they were serious). I can assure you that I am not crazy. I promise. (I hope).
I’ll have an update this weekend and post some pictures up of all the stuff that I will be giving away or donating.
Hilarity and irony always surround my life. A buddy pointed out that if you go to the bottom of each post it says, “Written by jonewantsm3.” Yes, M3 as in BMW M3. What’s wrong with me!?