For Christmas I received the book The Joy of Less. I’ve been wanting to read this for some time, but have been trying to work my way through the books I already have. But Christmas is a good excuse to be indulged, as our close family members always want to buy us something.
I was struck by these words in chapter 21.
“Our tastes change over the years, we grow tired of the music, movies and pastimes we once loved. Yet for some reason, we often hold onto these out-of-favour items- whether from guilt for the money spent, or with the hope that we’ll regain interest in them”.
These words really struck a chord with me. Early on in my purging of unwanted items, I let go of my collection of dance music CDs and vinyl. It felt really, REALLY tough because these signified my teenage years and music that I had absolutely LOVED. At that time, in those moments- I literally felt that music took me to another worldly place. I felt it completely expressed me, what I was feeling inside and who I wanted to be. Whilst I still love dance music, I just don’t listen to it as often and it really doesn’t provoke quite as strong a reaction in me. Maybe that’s because I’m older- I’m certainly not experience the tumultuous emotions of adolescence anymore (thank goodness!) , maybe I’ve found other ways to express myself, maybe I don’t need to express myself in my choice of music anymore- who knows?! But I experienced what Francine is talking about when I came to let go of those CDs and records.
I think a lot of it was tied up to the cost, each double album cost me £15-£20, with the vinyl singles between £5-£10 each originally and on eBay, I recouped only £1-5 for each. It was also that I felt that I was letting go of that part of my life, that I could never get back. But I had to admit, I hadn’t listened to most of these albums in years and that I wasn’t really going to either. The way we listen to music has also changed and now, these tracks- should I desire to hear them again are instantly accessible on-line and for free! So I let them go, to other appreciative homes and freed up shelves on my hifi unit. I’m experiencing similar feelings when I go through my books, DVDs/ videos or craft drawers.
However, I also have to admit that a lot of who I was- even as a young child, has not changed. I’ve loved roller skating, ice skating, sledging and skiing since I was 4 years old. My life became instantly more fulfilled and happier when I recommenced those activities. I’ve played the piano since I was 3- I can’t imagine my life without that. I’ve always enjoyed crafting, completing sequin art from the age of 7 and still taking as much enjoyment from it. From a similar age, I learnt to cross-stitch and do tapestry- I still do from time to time now.
The key here, is recognising in which areas of your life you have changed and need to move on, and in which you simply need to rediscover your true self. You will be so much happier for it! Here’s to a minimalist 2015- HAPPY NEW YEAR to all my readers!