When we moved last fall, we rented a storage unit to store most of our stuff while we lived temporarily in a tiny apartment. It was a difficult transition, and I missed my stuff. Our storage rental (and tiny apartment living) lasted only four months.
As I drive by countless storage units, I wonder what fills those spaces.
The answer is stuff.
There are more than 32 million storage unit spaces in the United States. And the average intended rental period is at least one year. This means for most people the renting is not temporary. It means we, as a country, have too much stuff.
Dealing with our stuff is not a new concept. In the 1980s, George Carlin was poking fun at us for having too much stuff. He said, “A house is a place to keep your stuff while you go out and get more stuff.”
Why do we want so much stuff? How do we resist the urge for more and find happiness in the enough we already have?
This year The Life-Changing Magic of Tidying Up by Marie Kondo has swept the nation. And yes, I read it and I tidied. Now, I haven’t finished yet, and still, it has changed the way I look at all my stuff.
I like having less stuff and enjoying the stuff I have more.
And giving away your excess is biblical, “Whoever has two coats must share with anyone who has none; and whoever has food must do likewise” (Luke 3:11).
I haven’t tidied enough to join the Tiny House Nation yet, although I enjoy watching the show and am impressed at the small spaces in which others lives.
Being an American and a Christian leaves me living with the tension of being told to buy more and realizing I have enough.