I just got back from my six day trip to San Diego, and wanted to share something I took away from this experience. Packing simply and traveling lightly is AMAZING! Wearing things that interchange easily is key! Most of us already know this, and probably put it into practice some of the time. The difference for me this time? The entire process was simple. Incredibly so. Packing? Done in a few minutes… I grabbed three bottoms, a few tops/layering pieces, a workout outfit, a lounge outfit/pjs, sneakers and flip flops, undergarments, my swimsuit, a tiny makeup bag, a few jewelry pieces that worked with everything … I mean, I seriously fit all of my clothes and shoes into this weekender bag. I had a backpack with the rest – snacks, electronics, chargers, etc. I used my friend’s bath stuff – seriously why did I used to think I needed to bring so much stuff? Simple is so much easier!
For perspective, I have several of these bags in various sizes, a matching set, and I used to bring an entire bag at least this size full of hair, makeup, and bath and body supplies. Then I’d have a full suitcase of clothes (always pushing the weight limit), and typically another bag of shoes, and an overflowing purse. Traveling was way harder than it needed to be! And so was packing, maintaining it all, and repacking.
This time it was light, easy, and so freeing! I even left some items I decided I didn’t need to bring home: a couple of pieces of makeup I thought my friend would use more than me, a book I keep intending to read but don’t, a bottle of nail polish I used while there and have a duplicate of at home, and I finished up my sample toothpaste and deodorant, and disposed of my travel toothbrush, as well. What? I came home with LESS than I left with. Who am I?
I think the reason I’m noticing the difference and appreciating it so much this time, is that now, FINALLY, I am feeling free from my things. So much so that even traveling has been positively affected. My brain wasn’t as muddled up with everything I needed to tend to or remember, and my ability to see things differently was apparent with less decision fatigue. I even helped my friend declutter and reorganize her small kitchen while visiting, which was way easier than doing my own, by the way. Grab a friend if you’re feeling stuck! They aren’t attached to your things.
All of this to say, even if you’ve been decluttering forever – it’s been a few years for us, with the majority of change within the last year, and just now I’m able to breathe more easily and notice the extra space. Now I grab only what I need at the grocery store, and put it away with ease. Everything has a boundary (don’t get more than fits in your drawer!) and a purpose. No, I’m not “done”… I still have a few “decluttering projects”, as I call them, on my list. But I’m nearly there. And I promise you, all of the hard work and tough decisions are so worth it! Stay the course. Keep decluttering. Quit buying things you don’t need. Only keep and use what you love. Try out a capsule wardrobe. The extra space in your home, on your calendar, in your closet, and in your mind, is so absolutely worth it all.
Also, a gentle reminder… life is happening right now. All we have are these small moments that add up to be our life. Enjoy it. Right now. Do things each day that bring you joy. Don’t push through like you’re sprinting blindly to the finish line, checking off a list as you go… take your time (or go ahead and speed up when you need to), but don’t forget to pay attention and enjoy your life as you’re living it.