Oct 6, 2009

Paring Down the Stuff: Week 2 Progress

Here's an update on the second week of my first personal challenge, which is to get rid of (through donation or other means) ten items a week and then reflect on the process and its implications for both voluntary simplicity and social justice.

For some reason, this week it was much harder to find ten items to get rid of. Here's what I ended up getting together (I still have to drop off the donations in their respective locations):
1-2: 2 paperback books I've already read;
3: Old SAT study book;
4. A t-shirt from a triathlon I completed a few years ago;
5. A road map;
6-12: Duplicate copies of Cliff Notes (Yes, I still have a hearty collection of Cliff Notes that have ended up being pretty decent teaching resources).

I don't know why it was so difficult for me to find ten items this week. I still have way too much stuff and I know I have a lot more to give away, but I found it hard to go through clothes, books, or other personal items. I kept finding myself doing the "well, maybe I might need this one day" rationalization. That being said, I did find some resources to help me out this next week. Here's links to a few of them:

Do you have a great resource to share on how to sort through stuff, get rid of things, and/or pare down your personal possessions? If so, please leave a comment.


  1. What first put me on to simplifying my life was a book I read years ago by Anne Morrow Lindberg titled Gifts From The Sea......the premise being that when you are on vacation, you leave behind so much "stuff," and never miss it. If you haven't read the book, you might wish to do so. Very simply and beautifully told, each chapter heading is a different type of shell. The thoughts Ms Lindberg presented in her book have never left me.......Carol

  2. What a cool website/blog Marina! Thanks for sharing! Rick & I have been helping Griff & Pokey move and it is all a reminder of how much stuff we need to go through and dispose/share w/others who truly might need it! We recently joined a great website called Redlands freecycle---and I have already given away a couple things that other locals need! So all that feels good----Life is indeed a process of defining/refining/re-defining ourselves inside-out and outside-in! Lee Annie & Mark had to mandatorily evacuate Wrightwood this weekend(thankfully they are back home safe now) with just the very most important few things they could fit in their vehicles--I'm certain that experience clarified what is truly important to them. Love you.....Lou'Rie

  3. @ Carol - Thanks for sharing! I will add this book to my reading list.

    @ Anonymous - Thanks for the comment, Lou'rie. Freecycle is a great resource to use and life is indeed a process of defining, refining, and redefining ourselves... very well-stated!