In the United States alone, there is 2.8 billion square feet of storage space, or one and a third times the size of Washington, DC.
Surprisingly, almost 10% of Americans use storage facilities. According to an urban and tech writer, Patrick Sisson, one out of 11 Americans spends an average of $91.14 monthly on self-storage to make room for their material possessions. The storage industry is one of the most profitable business investments in the US, with an annual growth rate of over 7%, making it worth around $38 billion.
And yet, we keep buying. We naively think our problem is a space issue, but it is clearly a stuff issue. We have too much of it. We continue to cram new purchases into every nook and cranny, only to find that we must take a trip to the storage unit to get it whenever we need it, or we need help remembering where we stashed it.
You would think that inconvenience and locating your stuff are the only two problems we have with our excess, but there is a more significant problem.
In my book, Guide for Simple Luxuries, I suggest that many believe that accumulating possessions is the key to feeling secure. If owning some material possessions can provide security, then owning more will bring us even greater security. However, once we have met our basic needs, the actual security that physical possessions provide is less stable than we might think. Possessions can perish, spoil, or fade, and they can disappear more quickly than we realize. This fear of missing out (FOMO) on accumulating possessions can lead to a false sense of security.
More than a few of us believe owning things will bring us joy. Although we may not openly admit it, many seek happiness through material possessions. This leads us to chase after larger homes, faster cars, the latest technology, and fashionable clothing, all in the hope that it will make us happier. However, the happiness that comes from owning physical possessions is often short-lived. It can even cause regret when we realize it let you down rather than lifted you.
Clutter can hinder abundance in all areas of life. Research shows physical and mental clutter can hold us back from reaching our full potential and experiencing abundance. Physical clutter frustrates us, while mental clutter limits our thinking. If you’re seeking a new job, a better relationship, more financial stability, or supportive friends, but your life is plagued by toxicity, cluttered with stacks of dusty books and old items, or filled with memories of past relationships, then you’re effectively blocking the road to those desired destinations.
With negative thoughts, limiting beliefs, and piles of stuff surrounding you, seeing other options and solutions is next to impossible. Furthermore, the lines of communication with the Universe shrink more and more to bring you the life you desire. Open the lines with a slight clearing-out effort, and you’ll find the flow opening to more than a trickle. The Universe wants you to have an abundance of goodness in your life, but you have to work with it.
Anything that gets in the way of your hopes and dreams is clutter. It can be a closet full of clothes two sizes too small, boxes of photographs of long-gone relationships, or bins of your kid’s artwork who graduated college three years ago.
Look at it this way. Clutter is not out to get you but to get your attention. It wants to show you where you can improve and where you can redirect yourself. Get ready because it can get down to specifics.
In this seven-part series, we’ll look at how clutter is jumping up and down, waving its fat little arms, and screaming at the top of its lungs to help you understand why you accumulated the clutter in the first place.
Clearing clutter is about getting rid of anything that no longer fits into your life and creating space for the abundance the Universe is about to bestow on you, the happiness and joy you so richly deserve.