Does being wealthy, really means that we need to accumulate every single piece of material object the modern world is producing?
The truth is we don’t need all the material goods an average person own. We create clutter in our homes, we fill them with unnecessary stuff just to dump them soon enough we own something new. Too many cloths, to many appliances, cellphones, computers, objects that literally stuff our living space. The question is: DO WE REALLY NEED ALL THIS? The answer is: of course not.
From a young age we get our children used to receive toys, so that they grow a material based vision. They do something good and they expect an ward, they celebrate a birthday and expect a present, Christmas has just finished and they already asked for their next present. Our kids need our love, time and attention. Newborn don’t care of objects and that’s why babies are perfect. Kids who don’t own nothing find ways to play with whatever they find their ways developing more curiosity. Let’s have a look to the kids of poorer countries, they smile, they dance and play with each others. Kids of wealthier countries are games/toys obsessed and request present after present, and that’s just why as adult people they become so materialistic. The answer resides in the way we have been grown up.
Material possessions represent a weight on our souls, the more we have the more is difficult for us to move around. Think how difficult it can be to move to a new home when you carry with you loads of belongings. Or how uncomfortable it is to travel with infinite suitcases.
We need to learn to see the beauty in a few selected things we really need and that really add value to our lives. This way we also stop to feed our planet’s landfills, because the reality of facts is that sooner or later your possessions might end up just as waste.
In 2018 I decided to leave behind my working life in London and headed to the Dominican Republic to learn and appreciate that life can be satisfying without all the useless habits we enjoy in western countries. I created a project aimed to support poor communities and kids in school, so that they could benefit from school supplies they barely had before. I was so surprised to notice the joy in the eyes of those young kids, when receiving a simple notebook, a pen, a rubber and so on. That shy smile, showed appreciation and gratitude that immensely filled my heart with love.
I had never been materialistic, and one of the best things my mum could ever teach me, was that material possesions aren’t worth nothing if you don’t have your peace of mind and tranquillity. I learnt from her, an experience, a relationship, a gesture, an emotion are worth way more than material things. And indeed from this experience in the Dominican Republic I gave up all need of useless accumulation, preferring more and more experiences, people and balance against the momentary thrill of a new gadget.
If you relate to what I’m discussing here, it is worth to do some cleaning in your life. Garage sales are a great place to start! Loads of websites, and apps allow you to sell your unwanted cloths or objects. Clear the clutter, release the unnecessary. You will feel light and released. If your kids have too many toys, leave their favorite and give the others to charity. It’s such a shame that so many toys lay in dark storage rooms, when they could lit the face of another child who has never owned anything like that. A coat you never use is totally useless, in your closet if you never put it on, while another person, maybe an homeless could benefit in such profound ways from a small gesture.
The bottom line is that when we’ll get to the end of our lives, it will be the memories of what we have done and achieved that we will cherish the most, while anything else is destined to perish.
If you are up for the change, drop a comment below and let me know how you intend to go about it or if you have done it, please share your experience.
Below is a short documentary about my experience in the Dominican Republic, if you are happy to watch it.
Wishing you a prosperous, healthy and happy life.