Tuesday, October 23, 2012

13 Reasons to Live with Less


1. Because time is too precious and short to spend it looking for, organizing, sorting, cleaning, buying, desiring and managing our stuff.

2. Because to somebody, we are the Joneses.  Somebody is watching you and I and trying to keep up with our lifestyles.  By living and thriving with less we help to create a new status quo.

3. Because the world simply cannot afford the American dream.

4. Because everything we bring home must eventually be disposed of.



5. Because being the hands and feet of Jesus to a starving world costs something, and having less leaves us with so much more to give.

6. Because nobody has ever found joy by acquiring more trinkets.

7. Because the appropriate response to our own gratitude is generosity.  If we are truly thankful for all that we have, we will give it away.

8. Because wanting to buy as much as we can for as little as we can drives an economy that loves money at the expensive of people.

9. Because all of the most beautiful things in life are simple, often intangible, and almost always nearly free.



10. Because less stuff means more room for people and life. More room for epic board game battles and monster Lego creations and impromptu tickle fights on the living room floor.

11. Because someday somebody we love is going to have to sort through every item we chose to hang on to.

12. Because it becomes increasingly difficult to see the difference between our needs and our wants when we are surrounded by so much more than we need. 


13. Because we have the choice.  And with choice becomes responsibility.  Much of the world cannot choose to live with just enough because they don't have enough to begin with.  We must choose to live simply so that others can simply live.

We are doing one small thing (almost) every day for a year to create a simpler, greener, more intentional life. Take a moment to read all About Us, check out The Rules of our year long project and sign up for our RSS feed or "like" us on facebook so that you can follow our journey to radical simplicity!

35 comments:

  1. This. This is good for the soul.

    Thank you for the reminder of what we all know and too often forget.

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  2. Such true, beautiful and inspiring words. Thank you.

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  3. So well put, Kelly. You've captured the essence of simple living. Thanks for inspiring others.

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  4. Your post reminded me of the saying, "No one ever says on their deathbed that they wished they spent more time at the office." We could change that around to say, "No one ever says on their deathbed that they wished they had a bigger house or more stuff."
    Thanks for the poignant reminder.

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  5. Well said - this is a beautiful post.

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  6. I think you're spot on, but my toddler strongly disagrees with #6.

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  7. I'll be honest, I'm (sadly) not as "radical" as you are, but your blog/passion/mission has made a huge impact on me. I am constantly thinking of your encouragement of letting go of things. You have helped me part with many-a-things that I normally would have held on to! Thank you for your inspiration!

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  8. Thank you. I'm on this journey. May take me awhile, but I'm on my way!

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  9. I absolutely love this post! I have never followed a blog before and I can't even describe how much this log speaks to my heart... For many years my family has chosen to live a simple life. We are continually evolving in our simplicity and always trying to make little changes along the journey! This blog has given me few pointers and some inspiration but more than anything you are articulating what I have known in my heart but couldn't express so clearly, so eloquently. Thank you!

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  10. This is a great list! I have one question though, and please don't take it the wrong way! :)
    How does living with less mindset go with having a large family? Wouldn't living with less also imply living as a smaller family?

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    1. Hi! I personally believe that the problem is not that there are too many people or not enough resources. The problem is that too many of us are using more than our share of the resources, too many people living like all that matters is their own comfort and happiness.

      Personally, I think it's far better to add 6 new people to the world who have a passion for humanity,who serve others and love God, than only have one or two kids who have a sense of entitlement and are driven to consume. So I guess I'm saying that I think that how you raise your kids is more important that how many you have. :)

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    2. We are a minimalist family, of six. Life to me is about the people in it, not the stuff. It isn't about the number of people you love or the amount of children you choose to have.
      Great post Kelly, I love number 6.

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  11. 11. Because someday somebody we love is going to have to sort through every item we chose to hang on to.

    That one really struck me. My sister died this summer in a car accident and we still haven't been able to make ourselves clean out her room. I am dreading that task one day. It has made me want to have less and be organized so if my husband is left with little ones all to himself one day, or if my family has to come and help my husband sort through my home, it will be as simple and sweet a task as is humanly possible. Live like you're dying... live like your treasure is in heaven!

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    1. I so agree with Becca. Number 11 is enough reason for me to scale down drastically. I had to do the same thing when my Mother passed away...devastating. I also strongly believe in number 5...so many living with nothing, and we have so much stuff.

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  12. ALL great reasons, especially #5. How easy it is to forget what sacrifice really means ~ that our offerings will actually COST us something.

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  13. I really love your blog and your message. Change starts with one person - keep it up!

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  14. So wonderful! I want to keep these reasons on the fridge...

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  15. I'm printing these out - along with the sweatshop list. Thank you!

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  16. Thank you for this post. I really like how you switch between the (seemingly)small, practical things and the big picture in this and the other blog.
    Ieva

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  17. This is probably one of the most inspiring posts i have read, and reminded me of this saying: 'Be in the life of this world as if you are a stranger or a traveller'. It is a great reminder of what a short, temporary life we lead. Keep up your great posts Kelly! :)
    Sara xx

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  18. I love this. thanks for posting it. This is something that I have been thinking a lot about. Good motivation.

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  19. So well said. I must admit-To me, you are the Joneses, and keeping up with you has brought me to a whole new place of living with less, giving so much more than I ever thought possible, and thinking so much more about what we invest our money, hearts and time into. Thank you for changing how I think....

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  20. All i can think of is the Amish

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  21. Number 11 is so true for me as well. My in-laws were tragically and suddenly killed this past summer when trees fell on their cottage, killing them instantly. Nobody should lose their parents that way and now my husband and his sister are left to go through everything their 45 year old marriage accumulated. I *never* want my boys to have to sort through so much of my stuff and feel the guilt about not being able to keep EVERYTHING.

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    1. Dorothy, that's awful. Just awful!
      My parents, in their 60s, are borderline hoarders. I dread the day my sisters and I have to sort through all that mess. (I will seriously suggest we rent a construction dumpster. Really.)
      Like you, I don't want my kids to have to sort through junk after my death. I'd rather they laugh and talk about the great memories we had together. Experiences and memories last forever, and they don't need to be dusted!

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  22. This is the most inspirational blog I've ever read - and this, your best post yet. I needed to make some serious changes in my life - I was drowning in STUFF and DEBT. I was struggling to find a way out of worshipping STUFF and then I stumbled across your blog. This is the the best line of all "We are doing one small thing (almost) every day for a year to create a simpler, greener, more intentional life."
    Making huge changes all at once might not be sustainable, but small daily gestures can add up to BIG things. I'm currently on Day 7 of a project you've inspired me to do - 100 Days of Giveaways. I am handing perfectly good, brand new things over to friends who will get far more enjoyment than I will - as you say - "looking for, organizing, sorting, cleaning, buying, desiring and managing (my) stuff."
    It is freeing to be moving books, home d├ęcor items, scrapbooking supplies, etc. out the door. It is even more wonderful to look forward to a cup of tea or a laugh with a friend when the exchange happens. Boxes and bags of clothes and other items have also gone to thrift stores in the area. I am far from living like a monk, but I have so much more than enough STUFF. (I was once told I have many of the markers of a potential hoarder because I attach emotions to possessions. I need to attach emotions to people and not STUFF!)
    I look forward to spending my free time on volunteering and making changes in the world. That will only happen when I change myself first.
    (BTW, I am the mother of an only child and the thought of burdening him with all this is heartbreaking. Thank you for pointing this out)

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  23. Can't believe I just discovered this blog. It was meant for me and my family (minus 4 of those kids). Excited to follow along.

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  24. "Because to somebody, we are the Joneses." Amazing thought. Love your blog!!!

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  25. Number 11 is something I have to remember everyday - I am 66 and now I see this is a big truth. Thanks for remembering this truth.
    Sylvia

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  26. So many good points. #1 is a big part of why I like simplifying. I especially liked #2 because I hadn't thought of it that way before, thanks! New to your blog, off to check out more!

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