I next tried listening to a podcast about organizing the home, but I came to the realization that everything the hosts were discussing didn't have any meaning at all to thousands of people in this world. Meal planning? For families who eat only one meal a day, they know exactly what's for dinner—if they're lucky enough to even have dinner. Organizing your closets? There are people in the world who have maybe two outfits total. Maybe just one. Reducing the clutter in your kids' rooms? Some families have only one bedroom where everyone sleeps, with room enough only for beds or mats on the floor.
Why, when I had a safe home in a safe neighborhood with plenty of food to eat, clean water, money to pay the bills, time to take vacation with my family, was I suffering under the stress of trying to not have so much stuff in my life? How did I get there?
It's become too easy to buy anything I want, whenever I want, to be delivered right to my door if I want. But the easy shopping leads to a crowded life that leads me down a path of taking everything for granted. Then the burdens pile on, and not only have I forgotten to be grateful, but I'm grouchy and uncomfortable in my comfortable life. And I'm not even rich! Sometimes I go to enter a sweepstakes and then I catch myself thinking, What if I win? I'll really be miserable! Ha!
So I start looking for help, but there are so many experts out there making money on this problem of abundance that shouldn't even be a problem. Yes, some of them have genuine hearts to help people. Some of them just want to make millions. They aren't wrong that having too much is a problem. They aren't wrong that the educated, privileged, well-off don't always know how to take care of the smallest details. But running out and buying all their books and taking all their courses isn't necessarily the way to solve it. There's the danger that people will think as I did that if I just read the right book, listen to the right podcast, I'll get everything together.
The trouble is, what do I do? Prayer, yoga, deep-breathing exercises might be a start, but I think I need to stop looking for the solution in the minimalism frenzy. For me, anyway, I've got to put down the books and log off the websites and just tackle each job one at a time. It's not easy. But there are bigger problems out there.