How I came to realise that the less I own, the better I feel.
A lot of people would probably describe me as pretty materialistic. Yes, I do like clothes and nailpolish and own quite a lot of them. The same goes for books. However, it may come to a surprise that I am also a very generous donor to the Red Cross and clean out my closet regularly (I would never throw out books though). Of course, this has not always been the case and it took me several years to realise how liberating it it to actually own less.
When I first moved from home to be an Au Pair in Paris aged 18, I brought with me I don’t know how many suitcases filled with all sorts of random stuff. For years, I would even keep staple upon staple of old magazines which of course I never looked at again.
Nine years later, I have moved to different cities and apartments numerous times, and each time I move, I leave a lot of my stuff behind. So the constant moving kind of lead to an automatic “survival of the fittest” of my belongings. It just got too tiring to pack and unpack staples of unworn clothes, mobile phones I had five years ago and cheap candle holders, which is why I gradually gave more and more stuff away.
And the constant moving also changed the way I consume: I am careful to no longer buy cheap clothes only because they are in fashion, knowing that I will wear them probably twice before they bore me and/or fall apart. It’s so much nicer to invest in one elegant cashmere sweater rather than three pieces of polyester at Zara. Same goes for souvenirs, home deco, gadgets, makeup etc. (because we all know that packing the small stuff is the really annoying part about moving). I always ask myself if I really need to buy three fridge-magnets on each vacation? Nope, one is enough and sometimes, even a simple postcard will do!
I assume that today, all of the things I care about fit into approximately 10 boxes. And I feel so good about it! Of course, having lived in a furnished flat for the past three and a half years and not owning any furniture comes in quite handy now as well, with my upcoming trip in mind.
So if you ever need help cleaning your shit out, just give me a call: I am pretty radical at this and guarantee you feel better once all that trash is gone!