Why Don't You Buy More Stuff?


…a lady asked me at back to school night. I told her I had a small suitcase of clothes, and everything else is packed in boxes in our new home, inaccessible until we move in. It could be months before I see my wardrobe again.

But I don’t want more stuff. Since my college days, when I OD’d on Mother Theresa, Ghandi, and American transcendentalism, I learned to quit wanting things. It's a philosophy that's always resonated with me, but Ralph Waldo and Henry David, those masters of American literature, seared into my psyche that accumulating things is not the path to happiness, that simplifying is the better way.

Since that time, I've dedicated much of my life to earning money. But not to accumulate things. I use money almost exclusively to have freedom to spend my time the way I chose, to give my daughter opportunities, to enjoy adventures and experiences that require money.

I’ll likely be wearing the same outfit to the next PTA function, my fingers, wrist and neck bare of jewelry, and the car I drive there will top 300 thousand miles on the way to the parking lot. It’s how I chose to live. My choice, my liberated, informed choice. A choice I celebrate.

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