The Art of Enough

I found myself inspired today by a post on Apartment Therapy about knowing what enough feels like, and being grateful for what one already has. There’s art in being satisfied, an art I’ve aspired to since even before I started this blog (a year ago!), before I decided to stop shopping and start minifying. It turns out that having enough wasn’t about acquiring more, but about getting rid of half of my stuff, so that I was left with the things I really want and need, and space for life instead of stuff. As I look around my house tonight, I can feel it: enough.

Enough life, in the cats and the fish tank and the potted violet in the windowsill. Enough to eat, with farmer’s market vegetables spilling over from the bowl on the dining room table. Enough solace, in a cup of tea and a good book. Enough clothes, as I learned from Project 333. Enough love, in the form of a wall of photos of our friends and family over the staircase, and in the form of my husband, who will be home soon from his evening run. It is enough for me, and I am so grateful for it.

Enough looks like this:

and this:

and above all, this (the faces of some of my family and friends):

If there’s anything I’ve gained from Project Minify for which I am especially grateful, it is simply this: I know now that I have enough, and that I should be grateful for it. Thankfulness is something I’ve been thinking about a lot over the last few days. Last weekend, I volunteered for a bereavement camp for children, run through a local hospice, where I am finishing up my very last fieldwork for my degree. It was an incredibly therapeutic couple of days for the kids to grieve for the ones they had lost – parents, siblings, grandparents, friends. I learned something from the dorm full of little girls I chaperoned, as I watched them not only cry and commemorate their loved ones but also run around and play and make new friends, in the midst of all that grief. Life isn’t about having stuff, or making money, or even cultivating experiences. It’s about love, and gratitude for every minute that we get to spend with one another. And I think it’s easier to hold on to that knowledge, and even savor it, and to invest my energy in simply loving the people around me…now that I know that I have enough.

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4 thoughts on “The Art of Enough

  1. What a great post, thanks for the inspiration. I too have been cleaning out my house and my basement just keeps filling up with sacks for donation. The more I clean out and organize, the more my mind feels organized. :) AND, I’m working on investing my time and energy better as well. My hope is to create a career where my passions and dreams support the passions and dreams of others. Life really is too short to put up with a day that fills you with negativity!

    • Sounds like a perfect goal to me – quite like my own as an occupational therapist! And I’m right there with you – I find that the more I pare down, the more I feel comfortable in our home!

    • Well, you would be at the top of the list of people I love and am grateful for. And you’re prominently featured on that wall o’ photos, ever since you mailed me the ones of me and you!

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