Ever since I was laid off in November 2009, stuff has become less important to me. During my lay off, I soon began to realize what truly makes me happy in life. I found out my happiness comes from my experiences in life with family and friends, the thrill of learning new things, and the accomplishment of a job well done. I began to realize stuff just doesn’t make me happy.
I don’t catch Oprah very often but when I do, her show seems to resonate with me. She did a show about happiness and had an expert on the show explain how the happiness or thrill from stuff wears off in 3 months. However, experiences last a lifetime. So for my Mom Debbie’s birthday in March I gave her tickets to the play, “An Evening with Lucille Ball.” My Mom had her picture taken with Lucie Arnez and also got her autograph. The memory of our exciting day will last a lifetime whereas if I had given her stuff it could possibly wind up in the corner collecting dust.
I have recently had discussions with friends and family about how we all have too much stuff. I am glad I am not one of those people who have to buy the latest and greatest stuff. Don’t get me wrong; I love those people who buy the latest and greatest stuff because they usually get rid of their old stuff, which becomes my new stuff. I would love a flat screen TV but I already own 5 TVs. How many TVs does one person need? (Two TVs were previously other people’s stuff). Besides, I am cancelling my cable soon so I don’t really need any TVs.
I am bored with the décor in my house. I didn’t do much painting when I moved in 6 years ago because I was about 70lbs heavier and it would have been extremely hard. But now that I am working out more and losing weight I feel energized to re-do areas in my house. So my house is going through what I like to call Extreme Home Makeover – Green Edition. My brother calls “being green” the “new cheap,” but I beg to differ. Frankly I think people have too much stuff, so I am willing to take the old stuff off their hands. That being said, here is my wish list (PS. I also believe in positive energy and if I put it out there I want something, it will happen).
My Wish List
- Bathroom – Asian décor (black, red or orange) with an Earth, Wind, Fire, Water theme inspired by my friend Diane.
- Kitchen – Cherry décor.
- Living Room – Neutral sectional, pictures/artwork of trees, TV antennae (getting rid of the cable), or Sage couch covers.
- Office – White Table Desk (preferably with glass top), and Black picture frames.
I am already well on my way with some of my décor thanks to my Aunt and Uncle who are moving. I am helping them organize, pack, and sell their stuff. My perks have been free stuff from them. I am so excited about my black/red dishes for my soon to be cherry kitchen. BTW- I love to organize people’s stuff, pack, and do garage sales. I swear I should open a business called Less Mess with Jess. Feel free to call me to help organize especially if it involves free stuff!
Why Second Hand Stuff?
1. It allows me to be creative and use old pieces as new fresh artistic pieces. (Besides, I don’t want someone to throw me out when I am old).
2. It helps with the environment. If I am buying less stuff, then companies are making less stuff. Plus, I am taking stuff people would put in landfills. I enjoy helping out with my carbon footprint.
3. It creates good Karma. If I give away stuff I don’t need to others, I may get new stuff I need in return. This principle is already working for me today. Just ask my Cousin Sammy about all the stuff I just gave her.
4. It is economical for an unemployed girl with student loans.
5. It is fun to hunt down stuff and figure out a way to use it. For my friends who know about my Strengths finder class, strategy is my number one strength so it delights me to find a new strategy for old stuff. (That was for you Kim and Matt!).
6. Most importantly, old stuff has a story and I love a good story. As I work on my house, I will share some of the fascinating stories with you.
Jess AKA The Stuff-anater