When we let go of our possessions, our ability to concentrate improves. Why might this be? Things don’t just sit there. They send us silent messages. And the more the item has been neglected, the stronger its message will be. Maybe there’s an English textbook that I gave up on before I even got halfway through it. It might be looking at me now and saying something like: “You look bored. Why don’t you try to study me again?”
Fumio Sasaki from his book “Goodbye, Things: The New Japanese Minimalism.
I recently read Fumio’s book “Goodbye, Things.” and I thought it was a very interesting take on minimalism. I loved a lot of his viewpoints on our possessions and what they mean in our lives. I particularly think that the silent to-do list that our things give to us is worthy of mentioning.
How many times have you felt overwhelmed by your possessions? Are they silently telling you that you have more things to do, more things to add to your daily list?
I have kept many how-to books like the English book he mentioned in the past. They did call to me to study them, and I have since found that if it isn’t a reference I am either studying right now or one that I have continually come back to, I can let it go.
I think that also as we keep more and more things they silently tell us: “I need dusting" or “I need to be organized” or “Look at me, I’m interesting, aren’t I?” All of this can create so much more mental clutter than we are aware of.
I believe that if we use Joyful Minimalism and truly only keep things that we are using currently or we love to have around in our environment that they silent to do list will go away, or be a very short list.
What are your thoughts on the silent to do list? Are your things calling to you? What are they saying? How can you start to change your relationship to your things?
I would love your comments below or write to me at: