Needing Less so I can Give More involves not using or owning or having some things. I recently had time and money to go shopping but honestly could not think of a thing I needed or wanted to buy. I am so incredibly satisfied… partly because I am determined to need less to give more in my third third.
I thought about the things that I don’t have in my house, simply because I don’t need them and having them would be encumbering at this point of my life. These are not really sacrifices, I just have found I can easily live without them.
- A one-cup coffee machine that uses small plastic canisters. I love to use these at other people’s homes and in hotel rooms. I have considered the ease of having one. But, when I calculate the price of a cup of coffee with this arrangement, I decide that I can continue with my more ordinary 12-cup drip machine.
- An extra freezer. There was a time in my life where an extra freezer saved us money. With four teenaged boys and a daughter, all with friends who were welcomed at our home, living in the country and with a big garden, an extra freezer was not a luxury. A year’s worth of frozen peaches and a month of prepared main dishes, extra ice cream and a few dozen hidden cookies, probably a number of inexpensive frozen pizzas that served as an after-basketball-snack–having room to have those on hand saved many trips to town. Now, no need for an extra freezer when we could probably live for several months on what our kitchen fridge will hold.
- Store bought snacks. We don’t have pop/soda/cola on hand. We don’t snack on cookies that come in packages. No cake or pancake mixes. I have always been a “from scratch” kitchen person, mainly for good nutrition and money saving reasons. These things not in our home now doesn’t feel like we are missing anything.
- Clothes I haven’t worn in a year ….with a few exceptions like our wedding clothes. This doesn’t necessarily apply to all in our home. I have tried to dispose of t-shirts I deem unnecessary that belong to certain male members of our home, only to find them salvaged from the discard pile and returned to a drawer. My closet, though, gets a regular purging.
- A television in our bedroom. Just don’t have it.
Some of my examples are life choices made long ago, others are daily choices that I consciously consider. None reflect sacrifice in any way. But having a way of life that makes sense to me and is intentional helps to weed out the things that are not all that important to me.