Skip to comments.21 Surprising Statistics That Reveal How Much Stuff We Actually Own
Posted on 01/11/2019 7:07:48 AM PST by SeekAndFind
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A few years ago, there was a challenge to wear only 8 pieces of clothing for a month. It sounds difficult, but that's 2 pairs of pants, a skirt, 4 tops, and a jacket or sweater. Participants found it much easier than they expected and were surprised that coworkers, friends, and family members didn't notice they were wearing the same pieces of clothing over and over.
Yay capitalism! Yay America!
Our problem is that we have managed to by mostly durable stuff and take care of it. We have furniture that is easily 40 years old, has made 7 moves and still looks and functions well. We keep cars more than 10 years they are always garaged when not in use. We have owned 5 since 1974. I have had one watch my entire adult life. Etc.
We still have way too much stuff.
I do think the author has absorbed a bit too much ‘class struggle’ thinking, but on the other hand, like Marie Kondo’s books, there is some useful wisdom that grandma or grandpa would have thought of as ‘common sense’, except for the fact that few folks of that generation had the problem(s) of ‘too much’ stuff in big houses.
From the same website:
“Purity and simplicity are the two wings with which man soars above the earth and all temporary nature. Thomas à Kempis
Simplicity brings balance, freedom, and joy. When we begin to live simply and experience these benefits, we begin to ask the next question, Where else in my life can i remove distraction and simply focus on the essential?
Based on our personal journey, our conversations, and our observations, here is a list of the 10 most important things to simplify in your life today to begin living a more balanced, joyful lifestyle:
1. Your Possessions Too many material possessions complicate our lives to a greater degree than we ever give them credit. They drain our bank account, our energy, and our attention. They keep us from the ones we love and from living a life based on our values. If you will invest the time to remove nonessential possessions from your life, you will never regret it. For more inspiration, consider Simplify: 7 Guiding Principles to Help Anyone Declutter Their Home and Life.
2. Your Time Commitments Most of us have filled our days full from beginning to end with time commitments: work, home, kids activities, community events, religious endeavors, hobbies the list goes on. When possible, release yourself from the time commitments that are not in line with your greatest values.
3. Your Goals Reduce the number of goals you are intentionally striving for in your life to one or two. By reducing the number of goals that you are striving to accomplish, you will improve your focus and your success rate. Make a list of the things that you want to accomplish in your life and choose the two most important. When you finish one, add another from your list.
4. Your Negative Thoughts Most negative emotions are completely useless. Resentment, bitterness, hate, and jealousy have never improved the quality of life for a single human being. Take responsibility for your mind. Forgive past hurts and replace negative thoughts with positive ones.
5. Your Debt If debt is holding you captive, reduce it. Start today. Do what youve got to do to get out from under its weight. Find the help that you need. Sacrifice luxury today to enjoy freedom tomorrow.
6. Your Words Use fewer words. Keep your speech plain and honest. Mean what you say. Avoid gossip.
7. Your Artificial Ingredients Avoid trans fats, refined grain (white bread), high-fructose corn syrup, and too much sodium. Minimizing these ingredients will improve your energy level in the short-term and your health in the long-term. Also, as much as possible, reduce your consumption of over-the-counter medicine allow your body to heal itself naturally as opposed to building a dependency on substances.
8. Your Screen Time Focusing your attention on television, movies, video games, and technology affects your life more than you think. Media rearranges your values. It begins to dominate your life. And it has a profound impact on your attitude and outlook. Unfortunately, when you live in that world on a consistent basis, you dont even notice how it is impacting you. The only way to fully appreciate its influence in your life is to turn them off.
9. Your Connections to the World Relationships with others are good, but constant streams of distraction are bad. Learn when to power off the blackberry, log off Facebook, or not read a text. Focus on the important, not the urgent. A steady flow of distractions from other people may make us feel important, needed, or wanted, but feeling important and accomplishing importance are completely different things.
10. Your Multi-Tasking Research indicates that multi-tasking increases stress and lowers productivity. While single-tasking is becoming a lost art, learn it. Handle one task at a time. Do it well. And when it is complete, move to the next.”
I can’t really say too much bad about any of those points, to be honest.
We have that now, it's called "unemployment" and "welfare." People can be retrained for new jobs, if not careers. Support while retraining. Everybody works.
I very much believe that there is a push to make collecting a thing of the past. decluttering, simple living, ridicule of hoarders, etc. It’s all a push to get people to live on/with less so that the great unwashed masses can be paid less (money just for necessities), worked harder and longer (no hobbies) Nothing extra is needed. Of course there is the human need to own stuff, but it’s being allowed in cheap trinkets that no longer have any real value or are disposable.
Look at the push to get entertainment from the web/screens. Movies and music in the cloud, buy mp3s of music instead of discs or other media.
it’s just my observation, but big long term picture is to breed out or condition people to do with less.
Guilty as charged... When I moved out from grad school, everything I owned fit in the back of a small pickup with camper shell. During my last corporate relocation in 2007, I required two semis.
That one about spending more for stuff than higher education is stupid. If you spend on higher education at all, it will be more. Otherwise, it will be less. For most people, it is less.
I like that, but I worry about it. I'm not sure that's possible in the 21st century. Unless we revert to a "40 acres and a mule" concept and move people to underpopulated areas and say: "You're a farmer now". Which would be problematic.
Some folks say we should train people to be robot repairmen. Sounds good. But I don't think everyone can be a robot repairman. It's about ability just as much as it is about quantity of work.
We can’t be Hoarders — all of our stuff not in the house fits in four garages, in plastic tubs with labels.
What is weird is that the more stuff I throw away, the more easily I can find what I need when I need it and appreciate what I have. And the nicer my house looks.
Decluttered space is, in a way, the most elegant and luxurious statement a person can make. Most poor people’s houses are packed to the rafters with cheap Chinese crap from wWalmart and stuff they never use, go to a rich person’s house and there is often less (but much higher quality) stuff.
I’ve gone to a lot of wine country parties at really nice places in the last few years (definition of ‘nice’ being probably 5-10 million dollar place, not that rare around here) and every one had SPACE; space with no crap, nothing, just a few nice pieces of furniture, some artwork, maybe a musical instrument. No piles of DVD’s, no corners filled with hobby crap...
Uncluttered is far more luxurious than packed.
I’m sure there are plenty of exceptions, but my observation is that quality over quantity is genuine luxury.
All right, I confess: I own 27 designer purses, but I havent bought another one in at least two years. I own maybe a dozen pair of shoes (including slippers) and I wear three of the pairs very regularly.
I collect (and actually use!!!!) fine china, sterling flatware and Waterford Crystal. My dish hoard takes up all the space in a large side bedroom closet, a large coffee table/trunk, a very large dining room sideboard cabinet, the main bedroom linen closet, half of the copious cabinet storage in the garage, and the entire space in a 10 ft by 20 ft by 8 ft(tall) off-site storage unit. Everything is very well organized and hidden away, except for my most favorite House of Waterford large vases and bowls.
I admit it, Im borderline hoarding, and Mr Roo Roo is starting to get irritated LOLOL!
Can you drive, do you have a good driving record? Companies are begging for chauffeurs. Truck drivers. Local delivery.
Those who own an alarm clock...and use it...should not be paying to support the idle.
Moving every few years in the military, we pitched a dumpster full of stuff we didn’t want to take with us. Having retired some years ago we’ve accumulated “crap” and more “crap” .
My wardrobe is no where near that.
I believe the largest single job category for men in the US is "Driver".
So what happens when companies really figure out driverless cars?
I'll tell you: the largest single job category for men in the US just disappears.
Do you think warehouses will be automated? Are you watching Amazon???
Do you think fast food will be automated????
This is an actual problem.
We have one TV that we virtually never watch.
It was on for 15 mins Tues night to hear Trump’s speech, and will be on again for his state of the union speech.
Not me, I have 3 of everything, O.K.6 of everything so I can always find one.
8. The average American woman owns 30 outfitsone for every day of the month. In 1930, that figure was nine.
Who knew there were only nine days in a month back in 1930!?
So true, the millennials I work around never bring a lunch, they have it delivered. They go out to eat most nights. Basically many spend their checks on eats and drinks.
Doesn't work for me. My hobbies include art in a couple media, as well as woodwork, fabric work and leatherwork. Invariably when I throw out a, "scrap," I deem no longer necessary, two or three projects later, that scrap proves to have been the perfect item I, could have used.
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