• Various/Onna Carr

The Process of Moving and Discovery:  Letting Go and Holding On

Updated: Oct 27, 2019

Post by Onna Carr

My family and I have been fighting the effects of chemical allergies while we were back at our once primary residence during the last half of 2015, and we are now wholly committed to moving to an area of the country with less agricultural pursuits and the unfortunate (at best) chemical applications that come with them. However, we will be keeping the Little Green House on the Corner to renovate her as time permits, hopefully getting her to livable standards by 2018.

As we prepare to move, I have been organizing my current room to accommodate the things that are mine from our previous home. I got rid of four trunk-loads of things from my old room! This February, I have proceeded to look at my current room and decided to do a significant Purge of Possessions (POP). I got rid of 3 large boxes of books at our local thrift shop, swapped around twenty books at paperbackswap.com, took several boxes to the thrift shop from my room of knickknacks and basic ephemera, and came to the conclusion that 36 linear feet is enough shelving for books for someone who reads about 10-12 a year, on average. I also cleaned out half the clothes in my closet. I kept only the clothes that I currently wear and a few formals that are fun eye-candy for that red carpet someday.:) Next, two boxes of paperwork (do we ever look at what we file after we file it?) evaporated from my life.

It is truly amazing how much ephemera I possessed: a lot of which I had completely forgotten about or never used. I have been reading a life-changing book (no pun intended) by Marie Kondo called The Life-changing Magic of Tidying Up. Tidying has never been my strong suit, but this book’s principles have given me an entirely new perspective that has helped me to have greater and longer lasting results than anything I have encountered up to this point. Kondo gives people an entirely new way to look at one’s possessions, and tools for how to effectively approach them in a healthy and balanced way. Because of this book, I have been able to discover what I truly like and to let go of things with greater ease and little regret.

Before I started Kondo’s book, I was able to explore the podcasts and website of Marc David, the author of TheSlow Down Diet, and his Institute for the Psychology of Eating as well as have access to Jamie Oliver’s Ministry of Food and School Dinners series and the documentary Cafeteria Man on FMTV.com. All these things, the podcasts, website information, and documentaries have helped give me a paradigm shift in my outlook. I can see that life is defined by outlook and that being gentle to myself empowers me to live in a better, more pleasurable way. By relaxing and letting go into the people we are destined to be, we are able to do the things that truly matter with greater joy and wholeness on this journey called life. By looking at challenges as observations and not as something to get upset over, we can truly become the best versions of ourselves that we can be.

It is strange how often things build upon one another, how one thing leads to another via an apparently unconnected line. For example, Marc David’s podcasts and website led me to consider their connection with Jamie Oliver’s work in his television series which, in turn, led me to watch Cafeteria Man which ultimately led me to Kondo’s book: all are about eliminating what isn’t fulfilling in your life and replacing it with what will complete you and bring you joy. Marc David deals with emotions and food, Jamie Oliver tackles food with emotion, and Kondo considers how emotions effect our possessions: all are linked together by a common thread. The precept that stands out to me as most applicable from all these diverse, informative materials is that we have to have a healthy respect and gratefulness for our lives in total: for our emotional wellbeing, for our healthy bodies, and for our peace-filled spirits. We need to mindfully fill our whole journeys with “all precious and pleasant riches” (Proverbs 24:4) some of which will fill and brighten our dwellings and some of which will bring us our greatest pleasure as beautiful memories of experiences that never need dusting or storing. Letting go is sometimes gaining not losing. Letting go can be as joyous a journey as gathering if framed through the lens of love.

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