Did you know that they Americans have about three times the amount of space they did 50 years ago? Three times. So you’d think, with all this extra space, they’d have plenty of room for all our stuff. Nope. There’s a new industry in town, a 22 billion-dollar, 2.2 billion sq. ft. industry: that of personal storage. So they’ve got triple the space, but they’ve become such good shoppers that they need even more space. So where does this lead? Lots of credit card debt, huge environmental footprints, and perhaps not coincidentally, our happiness levels flat-lined over the same 50 years.
Well I’m here to suggest there’s a better way, that less might actually equal more. I bet most of us have experienced at some point the joys of less: college — in your dorm, traveling — in a hotel room, camping — rig up basically nothing, maybe a boat. Whatever it was for you, I bet that, among other things, this gave you a little more freedom, a little more time. So I’m going to suggest that less stuff and less space are going to equal a smaller footprint. It’s actually a great way to save you some money. And it’s going to give you a little more ease in your life.
Three main approaches. First of all, you have to edit ruthlessly. We’ve got to clear the arteries of our lives. And that dress that I hadn’t worn in years? It’s time for me to let it go. We’ve got to cut the extraneous out of our lives, and we’ve got to learn to stem the inflow. We need to think before we buy. Ask ourselves, “Is that really going to make me happier? Truly?” By all means, we should buy and own some great stuff. But we want stuff that we’re going to love for years, not just stuff.
Secondly, our new mantra: small is sexy. We want space efficiency. We want things that are designed for how they’re used the vast majority of the time, not that rare event.
Finally, we want multifunctional spaces and housewares — a sink combined with a toilet, a dining table becomes a bed — same space, a little side table stretches out to seat 10. thaer was this video that I saw on my FB page that just made me to swoon in one full swoop.
So I’m not saying that we all need to live in 420 sq. ft (one of the award winning apartment schemes). But consider the benefits of an edited life. Go from 3,000 to 2,000, from 1,500 to 1,000. Most of us, maybe all of us, are here pretty happily for a bunch of days with a couple of bags, maybe a small space, a hotel room. So when you go home and you walk through your front door, take a second and ask yourselves, “Could I do with a little life editing? Would that give me a little more freedom? Maybe a little more time?”
What’s in the box that you hold so dear and yet had it unoppened for like many years? It doesn’t really matter. I know I don’t need it. What’s in yours? Maybe, just maybe, less might equal more. So let’s make room for the good stuff.