Sunday, August 9, 2009

Living Lean

After my two weeks in Concord for the NEH Workshop focused on American Transcendentalism, I have returned home with the desire to simplify my life. There are tons of books, articles, and how-to guides on simplification, but in looking at these, it seems to me that there is one thing missing. The reason why one would want to simplify and what one would hope to accomplish in that process.

This is the question I have pondered for the past few weeks. What is simplification and what are the benefits of such?

And this is what I have decided: for me simplification means having more time to do the things I really want to do. The enaction of this will be the challenge.

One element of this is to use everything I have rather than adding more.

And so, I am issuing myself a challenge: use what I have, wear it out or use it up! Nothing new in the house for one year, unless it is necessary for health, safety, or to replace what is worn out. This means:

Eat everything in the freezer and canned goods;
Use all the seeds I have for my gardens;
Wear all the clothes I have;
Knit or weave all the yarn stockpiled;
Quilt the fabrics stacked up;
Read the books in "holding";
And, complete all the projects started.

Hopefully, posting this will keep me honest and focused. How about I report the progress as I go along? Will you join me??

1 comment:

  1. Living lean is a challenge. We are doing pretty good at it mostly because we are confined to our home without the help of others to get out. That means there are no trips to the Mall and seeing things that you want and don't need but buying them anyway. I started getting books on loan from the library rather than buying them. My big challenge is trying to get rid of "stuff" in our house. I will say I am going to clean out a drawer and end up putting most of it back in. Oh, well, I have made some strides.


Thanks for dropping in on the farm today! I enjoy your comments!