Global Cottage / Simplify

Enough is Enough!

College hunks hauling junk

“So, what do you do with all your stuff?”

That’s the question that everyone asks when they hear we’re planning a round-the-world trip.

Good question.

Early in our careers, when we moved from one city or country to the next, it was due to a job transfer. It didn’t really matter how much stuff we had because the “Company” was paying for the move.

At one point, our possessions could fill an entire moving van. That’s like a Walmart delivery! Yikes!

Then something changed.
When we left our corporate jobs in London to return to America to start our own business, we realized we could live just about anywhere. Cool! Of course that meant we would have to pay to move ourselves. Do you know what movers cost? Ouch!

We started questioning why we had so much stuff.
What were all these things…and were they truly contributing to the quality of our lives? Did we really need such a big house to contain everything. It’s just the two of us. And since we don’t tend to stay put for long, were we just creating complications with all this stuff.

So many questions … and we needed to figure out some answers.

It all boiled down to one question.
What was our relationship with our stuff? Did it define who we were? Or help us live better lives? After endless soul searching, a feeling of calm came over us. We realized the key word was “Enough.” We only needed enough to create a simple home that would give us joy and feel welcoming to family and friends.

We went through a massive downsizing of our stuff.
Ebay, Craigslist, yard sales and Goodwill were our mantra. When it was over, we let out a great sigh of relief.

Now we own just enough to furnish a simple one-bedroom home.
Those items don’t require much space. So when we depart for our RTW next month, we’ll put our few belongings in a 10’ X 10’ storage unit and turn the key. In fact, by making multiple trips, we can move everything we own to storage in our small Kia Rondo. No moving van! Yay!

Other travelers sell it all and rejoice in the freedom they feel. That’s great! However, we’ve learned from past experience that we will come back, and we really don’t want to start completely from scratch. Life simplified.

Peace and Love,
Terri

4 thoughts on “Enough is Enough!

  1. It can be so freeing to let go, but also hard. I have narrowed down and narrowed down after the last couple of moves. Things we hold dear to our hearts because of memories are in storage (2 units – we hold a lot of memories). I agree with the thought of going back and starting from scratch would be very hard.

    Best wishes,

    Constance

    • Hi Constance, You’re so right about it being “freeing to let go’ and we’ve definitely done lots of that! But most of our “stuff” went to family and friends so we can visit it again! And since we’re veterans of many expat adventures in moving, we’ve learned to stick with “bang for the buck solutions” like lots of pillow covers, batiks for art, etc. – all lightweight and very portable. But when we come back to the US, it’s nice to have the basics so we don’t have to start completely from scratch. I’m so glad you stopped by and look forward to reading more of your great posts. ~Terri

    • Bronwyn, it sounds like we’ve lived parallel lives! As long as the company was paying we paid very little attention. But once we started moving ourselves, toting every item, renting every moving van, we saw the light. James said, “Now wait a minute! Do we really need all this?” And he was right. We are now pretty lean and mean when it comes to stuff, but it took years. Good luck! ~Terri

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