We arrive with nothing and leave with nothing; It’s the in-between time we get all screwed up. -pithy, I know
Moving is usually a chaotic event. And to be honest, my little home -or what’s left of it- is a bit chaotic right now. But it’s a good kind of chaos that I’m enveloped in at the moment instead of the usual hustle and bustle of running around town trying to find boxes in which to pack my belongings for transport to my new destination.
That’s how it’s always been in the past and this time I vowed not to repeat the same mistakes. Each time I’ve moved over the years, I’ve discovered the existence of unopened boxes filled with items that at one time meant something to me.
It's telling that I never bothered to unpack these boxes, nor use the items inside. The items remained unused, forgotten, resigned to a non-life, languished in darkness.
Curating, Not Collecting
At my core, I’m a minimalist even if that core is buried under layers of resistance at times. I love simplicity in all its forms: design, decor, fashion, functionality, style, living lightly, and tiny nests.
It’s living as a minimalist that’s been the hard part. It’s actually embarrassing to admit, but I too tend to accumulate life’s detritus. It arrives in the form of gifts, good deals that are too good to be ignored, and impulse buys.
Over that past few weeks, I’ve been getting ready to leave my beach bungalow and move over the hill to Silicon Valley, where I’ve lived on several occasions. I decided that this time I would carefully curate what belongings I kept, not only because of the small space I’ll inhabit, but mainly because I don’t need much. That meant selling, donating, and recycling what was still useful to others and trashing only the truly crappy.
My once cozy bungalow is now rather spacious, and while it’s not exactly like Steve Jobs’ unfurnished home, its getting there. And I like it a lot.
Minimalist living makes moving a breeze. Though it’s not quite breezy yet here at Beach Bungalow, I do detect a draft. 🙂
If you have only a few belongings, moving them isn’t an issue. Curating your belongings becomes a fun challenge; Conscious choice becomes the new default instead of the mindless acceptance that leads to unpacked boxes and forgotten items.
I’ve moved friends and family who were collectors and not curators… and it was always painful. I couldn’t count the number of boxes filled with useless and/or formerly useful items that I’ve carried from one place to another for one friend. Each time I was hopeful that she’d have discarded them, but when moving day arrived there they were like buried secrets, momentarily redeemed from their hidden lair only to be secreted way again and forgotten.
I’m understanding, perhaps for the first time, that fewer belongings make for fewer worries. It’s been a pleasure to discard some items while giving any others to those in need. Life feels lighter.
When I make my way over the hill from Santa Cruz to Silicon Valley in two weeks, it will be the first move in a very long time that will include the right balance of things, both essential and meaningful.
It will be breezy and I intend to keep the windows open.