Sherry A. Phillips

Suspense Author

How To Have More By Having Less

Sounds like an oxymoron doesn’t it? How can you have more by having less?

I’m going to tell you!

To live a more abundant life, you need to be focused on what is really important. What makes you feel happier, healthier and more abundant?

I can pretty much guarantee you that it is not things. When our family relocated from Tennessee to Virginia 3 years ago, we moved from a 3,600 square foot house to an 1800 square foot house. I had no choice but to pare down what we had accumulated during 16 years of marriage and 3 children. It was a lot. There were things were holding on to in our basement and attic that we had not looked at since we moved into the house.

We had toys and other things that never got any use, but were taking up space in our home. I had no choice but to ask myself why were we holding on to these things. Were the things so important, or was it the memories these things invoked that we were trying to hold on via the objects?

One of the aspects of leading a life of abundance is not getting bogged down by things. You can buy more and more and more and you can live in a house that is bigger and bigger and bigger, but is that necessarily better?

I don’t think so.

Research has shown that things do not make you happy. Experiences are what makes us happy.

From Fast Company:

There’s a very logical assumption that most people make when spending their money: that because a physical object will last longer, it will make us happier for a longer time than a one-off experience like a concert or vacation. According to recent research, it turns out that assumption is completely wrong.

“One of the enemies of happiness is adaptation,” says Dr. Thomas Gilovich, a psychology professor at Cornell University who has been studying the question of money and happiness for over two decades. “We buy things to make us happy, and we succeed. But only for a while. New things are exciting to us at first, but then we adapt to them.”

So rather than buying the latest iPhone or a new BMW, Gilovich suggests you’ll get more happiness spending money on experiences like going to art exhibits, doing outdoor activities, learning a new skill, or traveling.

When I was a teenager, I thought I wanted to be a princess and live in a palace. I used to think I wanted to live in a mansion too. As I got older, I realized that things like that were not as important as spending time with my family and friends, traveling and leading a healthy lifestyle.

Does it really matter what kind of car you drive? Does it make sense to live in a 10,000 square foot house if you’re only really using 2,000 square feet of it 98% of the time?

I was reading an article about 4 years ago regarding the Not So Big movement and it completely changed the way I thought about how I wanted to live and what size house our family really needed. You can read more about Not So Big in Sarah Susanka’s book by the same name.

Are you holding onto to things? Are you trying to impress the Jones’s and making yourself exhausted because of it? It’s time to rethink what your idea of what success is and what is truly important for living a life of authenticity and abundance.

Are you ready to downsize and experience all life has to offer?

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