“We are not our stuff” – The Minimalist

The choice I made at the start of the year was simple. I Resolve: No More Stuff In 2016!

You can read that story here. It has now been six months and I am remaining true to my vow.

“I haven’t set foot in a brick and mortar clothing store all year and have not clicked a website, even once!”

I thought the experiment was going to be harder. I thought I would weaken and buy something, either for Spring or for our trip to Cuba. So far, I haven’t been tempted to break my vow at all.

Maybe the reason I haven’t cared about adding new clothing to my life is because Joyce and I recently added a new member to our family. Our new puppy, Louisa, offers much more than any new shirt or jacket ever would.

Meet Louisa!

Louisa at the park.Dogs understand unconditional love. Her relationship with me is not based on what I wear, where I live, or what I own. She doesn’t care. Louisa always recognizes me at once, and never by my clothing. Our bond is deeper than that.

I wonder if caring for her has taken my mind off my retail therapy needs. Maybe that is another benefit of having a dog.

Charles Yu was right in saying, “If I could be half the person my dog is, I’d be twice the human I am.”

The choice to add a dog to our lives has inspired me to continue to consider the other choices I make in living my life.

At the start of the year, I said, “I hope putting retail therapy on hold for a year will connect me with a new intentional therapy that will provide me with … more time, more passion, more experiences, more growth, more contribution, more contentment. More freedom.”

These choices are now part of my journey. It will take the rest of my life to complete the exploration, but my suitcase will be lighter as I travel.

And, as I look for new resolutions in future years, I will continue to search for ways to connect with my new intentional therapy.

Are you like me, do you buy clothing from want or are you able to wait until you really need something?

Why is it that some of us think we need larger closets when what is needed is just less stuff? Do you know anyone who is defined more by their stuff than their person? How do you think that happens?

Does, “I have nothing to wear!” sound familiar? Do you think it mean “nothing” or “nothing people haven’t seen before?”

As always, the conversation starts here.

“In the ordinary choices of every day we begin to change the direction of our lives.” – Eknath Easwaran


Vivienne Westwood, the British fashion designer and businesswoman, says we should, “Buy less, choose well, make it last.” Watch and listen at Guardian Live. Westwood’s commentary is controversial, but she always has been. Tell me what you think.