“Do not spoil what you have by desiring what you have not; but remember that what you now have was once among the things you only hoped for.”
The trap of our time and our society is the desire for more. More money, more opportunities, more clothes, more travel, more, more, MORE!
A perfect example of this modern ill is the frequency of the donation of our “stuff” to charity. Of course the donating to charity part is good. But remember when those things that we now want OUT of our lives were things that we desperately felt we needed IN our lives? That top for a wedding, that book we simply had to own rather than borrow from the library, the toy that was going to assist in our quest to create a child genius. Now these things sit in a box waiting to be dropped off to the nearest charity bin because they crowd our lives too much.
I’m determined to continue on my quest for less. Enoughism is a concept that resonates with me.
“Enoughism is the theory that there is a point where consumers possess everything they need, and by buying more it actually makes their life worse off. Enoughism emphasizes less spending and more restraint in buying behaviour of consumers. Unlike Consumerism which Mirriam-Webster defines as “the theory that an increasing consumption of goods is economically desirable”, Enoughism is an antonym to consumerism.” John Naish.
I know that my own childhood, which was one of poverty, has caused me to have urges to give my children more “stuff” than they need. Mostly these little treasures are found in thrift stores, but even so, my challenge this year is to resist these urge to bring more stuff into our home. Whenever I have that inner compulsion to buy my lads a surprise gift, I will go deeper and ask myself a few questions. What do they really need? More stuff or more of me? I will question my urge to buy them a material gift, and no doubt I will find something within me that I can give; an idea for a creative activity or game, an extra long story time before bed, a special family dinner for no reason at all. These are the real treasures I can gift my children. Material gifts are easy to give. Creative, intentional and loving parenting is the real gift, the one that remains with them, and in them forever.
Take a look around you. What do you see? When I look around I see a beautiful family, a lovely, albeit compact family home and evidence of fun, love and learning (aka mess!) These things I now have were once only in my imagination. These are enough.