A year and a half ago I wrote a post about packing up all of my stuff. This week I've been unpacking all of my stuff, including my vast collection of HD-DVDs. As a sign of growth, I threw out my HD-DVD collection.
Part of leaving my job as a youth pastor and pursuing speaking and writing involves moving in with my in-laws. Alycia’s mom and her husband are two of the kindest and most generous people I know. Even before all the transitions we’re going through, they wanted us to move in with them. They have been so gracious to us in opening up their home and helping to make it our home as well.
We’re not moving for another month, but we’ve already started packing. We’re choosing between what we’ll want to have with us and what we’ll put in storage. Having to decide between what I can and can’t live without has been a sobering experience. I’m finding that I can get along without most of my possessions.
I’ve shared before about my propensity to collect media when I was younger. I would often walk through Borders and Best Buy, just looking to add books, movies and video games to my collections. I still own all of those books, movies and video games; I wish I could say that investment produced tremendous fruit in my life. Unfortunately, though, I’ve simply ended up with boxes full of stuff that I don’t really need.
We kept out some video games. I didn’t pack my Battlestar Galactica DVDs or anything in the MCU that I don’t have on digital. I kept out all of my box sets because it’s always a good time to watch Star Wars or Harry Potter. And I didn’t even think about packing A Knight’s Tale because I watch that movie multiple times a year.
I wasn’t taken aback by what I felt like I needed, but what I could do without. I had two boxes full of nothing but video games and movies, discs I have happily collected over the years, which I don’t need. It shouldn’t come as a surprise, though, because most of those games and movies have sat on my shelves for years, gathering dust and going unviewed and unplayed. I’ve invested a lot of money to have full shelves, but that investment hasn’t done much to fill my life.
I haven’t been filling those shelves as much lately; I’ve stopped going to Best Buy and I no longer “just look” at Amazon. Thankfully I now have a wife who keeps me in check and doesn’t let me just buy whatever I want. I am grateful to her for that; it is not a bad thing.
It was unsettling, though, to fill boxes with stuff that I simply don’t need. I’m not going to set those boxes on fire, because that seems even more wasteful than not watching the movies or playing the games. Hopefully, though, when we move again there won’t be as many boxes filled with useless stuff.
How do you keep from having too many boxes filled with too much useless stuff?