Living Simpler

Posted on April 10, 2013

Over the past few years I’ve tried to live simpler and hold onto things much looser. As a 20-something male in America, I like owning stuff. It’s even harder working in technology because cool, new things are everywhere! But sometimes the stuff in my life owns me in a big way so my wife and I have been trying to live simpler.

We’re not experts (and still, constantly struggle daily), but we’ve learned some things about how to appreciate what we have and want things less:

  1. Give possessions away on a regular basis: It’s a good reminder of how much we have and how much we don’t need. We have never once given something away that we wanted back.
  2. Set a budget: Tough to do, but financial contraints make you realize where your priorities are.
  3. Save: Pay for a monthly subscription to Netflix, Hulu, Rdio, etc? Try, also, saving a similar amount. Saving $10-$15 a month adds up over time.
  4. Get out of debt: If you have student loans, credit card(s), a car payment, or other debts pay them off as soon as possible. Budget for all necessary spending in the month and use the rest to kill the debt.
  5. Regularly give money to something: Give 5%, 10%, 15% of your income to something a month. Make it something you believe in and are passionate about.
  6. Sponsor a child: Similar to the last item, but there’s a deeper human connection here. You’re often allowed to write to your sponsored child and hearing from them is a very humbling thing.

Give them a try! Nothing fancy or new here, but try one a month and see the difference it makes.