Minimize Me: A former Hoarder’s Journey into a Life of Minimalism- Part 4: Reluctant to Let Go

This is part 4 of a series documenting my journey into a life of minimalism. The highs, the lows, the wins, and losses of minimizing the amount of stuff in my life.If you’re just jumping in, may I suggest reading the introduction, part 1, part 2, and part 3. Having a hard time keeping up? May I also suggest subscribing at the bottom of this page to receive updates. You’ll never miss a post and you’ll be one cool cat.

I went through my nail polish collection. Yeah. I had a collection of nail polish. Made up of, oh I don’t know, seventy or so differing colors. I must have had at least a dozen different shades of red. The gals are swooning and the men are scratching their heads: Aren’t all reds the same? No. No they are not. Now, I admit all of this sheepishly, but I think we’ve established that I’m going to be transparent about what we’re dealing with here. It would be good to note that this collection didn’t just burst into existence over night. But it didn’t take long to form either. Every Target run, a dangerous, dangerous place to be by the way and somewhere I do not let myself go into alone anymore, I’d walk away with a nail polish. Oh I just have to pick up some deodorant and toothpaste and a new Essie nail polish while I’m at it. Sheesh. It’s habits like this that got me into places of owning seventy nail polishes.

As the purging has continued, I’m finding it’s getting harder and harder to let things go. It took me an hour to pair down my collection of nail polish to twelve. I literally had to paint every color onto my nails just to properly compare shades. Hey, if I’m only allowed three reds, I want to be darn well sure they’re the right three. And that’s just the start of it.

For instance, that ceramic tiki cup I got at the Santa Cruz boardwalk, when I was probably twelve, in a total tourist trap of a gift shop. What purpose did it serve? None really. It had been hanging out under the sink in my bathroom for the past year and a half. What memories did it bring to mind? Uh, good question. I’m clearly sentimental about it. Yet I was having a hard time letting it go. Maybe it was that my mind was trying to trick me into keeping it. Or maybe, it had been something that had been with me for so long that it seemed like it was a part of me. Red alert. Back away from the tiki idol. When you start to feel like your stuff is a part of you that it somehow defines you as a person, that’s an indicator that it has to go. So I got rid of it. Dumped it right into the trash.

The more things that go into the dumpster, the more I’m starting to see myself differently, more the way that God sees me. With less I become more. I didn’t notice how my attachment to my things had so sneakily told me who I was. I wasn’t beautiful enough, smart enough, worth enough without X, Y, and Z. But I am. God says so. I’m worth so much and that’s something no ceramic tiki could say, probably because he can’t talk. Technicality here.

In all seriousness, I’m going to deviate from my introspective narrative here for a moment and talk directly to you. Yes you. Person reading this right now, you mean a heck of a lot to God. He thinks you are amazing. He loves you immensely. You mean everything to him and He gave everything for you. If you’re wondering what defines you, where your identity is, let me tell you, it’s not in your stuff. It’s not in your performance. It’s in your worth in Christ and that my friends has already been bought and given to you. Jesus is waiting. Let him consume you rather than your things.

Getting rid of stuff has reminded me of who I am. What my purpose is. I’m getting back to a place of simplicity. Striped from the chaos and stuff that has been shifting my focus from Jesus. It’s freeing. It’s rejuvenating. If this is the gain of having less then take more please. It’s becoming worth my while.

Thoughts, questions, concerns? Let’s discuss! Leave a comment below. Get a little heated. Throw your opinion out there. Hey, maybe I’m wrong. Maybe I’m right. It doesn’t really matter, I’m just glad you decided to join the conversation.