Finding JOY in Less “Stuff”


With one holiday already getting smaller in the rearview mirror, I am on a mission to attempt to savor the season this year via a different approach.

Part of my strategy, which revolves around a very less-is-more philosophy, involved getting a jumpstart on the holiday decorating this past weekend. A solid week (or two) prior to when we would typically deck the halls, I figured the sooner I surrounded myself with some cheer the sooner my spirit would be sparked.

And as the twinkling lights that surround me as I write this indicate, it has worked.

But as I went to task trimming our home this weekend, unpacking boxes and boxes of decorations of all sorts, I found myself struck by just how much “stuff” I’ve accumulated. So much so, that there are literally containers still full with festive things that no tree, wall or mantel could ever hold.

Yet much like the turkey soup, as I removed each of the mementos from the parcel it has slept in for the past year, a flood of memories — and emotions — accompanied its unveiling. There were gifts from gracious clients and nutcrackers from ballets danced in years past. Every one tells a distinct story of a particular time and place in my life. 

So it was only fitting that when I attempted to “de-clutter,” segregating the decor I really no longer use nor care for to be donated, that I felt my heart be tugged. I kept re-organizing my “give away” pile, opting to save an item for one more year, as if passing it on would be an act of betrayal. As if doing so would suggest that I’ve moved on.

But I have. And this little interaction with my holiday decorations has made me think about what else I might be holding on to out of supposed respect for someone else. I mean, if I’ve assigned such loyalty to an inanimate object, the chances are high that I’m doing the same with people and circumstances in my life.

Now, of course, this doesn’t mean that I’m going to start tossing my childhood ornaments in an attempt to lighten my load. But I am going to make a concerted effort to reassess the value something (or somebody) holds now for me, despite the contribution it may have delivered before.

Because celebrating the holidays Badass and Beautiful style means finding joy with less “stuff.” 

So hang the lights and put on the music. Because before we know it, the most wonderful time of the year will be gone. 

Be well,