A lot has changed in the last twelve months. This time last year, I was stuck. I was stuck in unhappy relationships with other people, with my stuff, and most importantly with myself. I decided to start taking steps to better my life. I started by doing something that has been on the forefront of my mind for quite literally my entire life. I adopted a border collie puppy. I knew that it was going to be an inordinate amount of work raising such a high energy & high intelligence dog, especially while going to school and working part time, but I also knew that she would push me to be the best person that I could be. You know the saying, be the person that your dog thinks you are. I spent the few months leading up to my puppy's arrival learning how to run. I ran every day, and I absolutely hated it. Weeks went by, months went by, my pup arrived and we ran every day, and now a year later I feel incomplete without a daily run. She (my dog) has pushed me to be in the best shape of my life. That resonated into every other aspect of my life. I realized that only YOU have the power to change the things that you don't like about yourself, and even more importantly I realized that you don't need to take huge leaps. Small steps all lead up to big goals much more quickly than you realize. The time is going to pass anyway, don't shy away from a dream just because it's going to take a while.
Anyway. The next adventure I started on was clearing my life of people who brought me down. I broke off my relationship with my boyfriend of four years, which meant moving out and leaving behind a lot of stuff. Retrospectively, this was (the best decision I've ever made) the beginning of my break up with stuff as well. I started looking at things with a much more critical eye. Moving into a tiny basement suite from a 3 bedroom house made me really question whether I needed that toaster, that vase, that cute little wicker basket in my life. The answer was usually no. By letting go of stuff, I was unknowingly opening myself up to fulfillment in a whole different way. Positivity started flowing into my life and by embracing change, a slew of opportunities started coming my way, including meeting one of the most inspirational human beings I have ever had the pleasure of knowing. I spent the next 6 months getting rid of over two thirds of my belongings and getting to know this new source of light.
That brings us to today. I am still getting rid of things. I am in the process of moving to a new place, but before I do I am going to pare down all my possessions to one hundred things. The nice thing about this challenge is that you can make your own rules. For example, my library is going to count as a single item. Books are very important to me, but even so, I have slimmed down my collection from three towering bookcases, books shoved in every which way, to one modestly sized bookshelf with room to spare.
What about you? What is your relationship with stuff? How many hours a week do you spend organizing your things, cleaning your house, putting things away and reorganizing? What are your most prized possessions? Do you know where they are, or are they buried among all the rest of your stuff? Even a few hours a week adds up to hundreds of hours per year. What could you do with an extra few weeks of free time every year?