Things We’re Learning – Lesson 3: Mentality of More

Mentality of More

Mentality of More: Overstuffed

I have discovered that I have a mentality of more. The answer is always “yes” to more. I didn’t ever notice this back at home, but it’s stood out to me in surprising ways as we’ve been traveling and I think that’s because it’s not the default answer in other countries. I think it’s bit of an American thing.

In America, the answer is always “yes” to more. Why? Because why not. Because I can.

One time it hit me was when, re-packing, for our Annapurna trek, or really any 6+ day trek we’ve done. We only wanted to bring minimal stuff since we were carrying it farther than across town, so we cut down and left the other stuff at a guest house in Pokhara. I had such a hard time paring down. My internal dialogue was going “well what if I want to change clothes? what if that shirt is dirty? what if that top is too warm, but that one isn’t quite warm enough? what if it’s raining, but not that cold? What it’s its raining and cold? What if I want to wear something different at night when we’re just hanging out than what I wore during the day?” I’m so used to “well, why not bring it?” that’s the default. Because I can. But packing for Annapurna was different, because I couldn’t bring it, because I couldn’t carry it up the mountain! And you know what? I was fine. I was great in fact. I was so much happier with less to think about. What if I flipped my paradigm? What if my default answer was “Less! Simplicity! Because why not?” instead of “More! Because why not?”. What if our default was single item, instead of combo meal? What if our default was one car, instead of multiple car households?

How about the simple, minimalist life? No need for decor. No fifty outfits in the closet. Not because I can’t carry it up a mountain, or can’t afford it, or can’t get it. But just because, why should I just get something or have something because I can?

I heard a podcast the other day with the challenge to own less than 100 things. That seems really extreme, but something I’ll be thinking about.

Less is more