The Stuff of Life

‘I can’t face all this stuff’
Photo by cottonbro studio on

Who can relate to this feeling when moving house? Thinking you have almost nothing, filling all the cardboard boxes in the world, nearly fainting at the size of the removal van, followed by the endless unpacking created by the endless packing?

The modern world is full of stuff and we’re constantly encouraged to feel that we need more. But…

Stress and more stress

The life-path of everything we buy except for essentials is:

  • Find the money
  • Spend the money
  • Get whatever it is
  • Hopefully use/wear it a lot – or maybe not
  • Faint when the credit card statement arrives
  • And repeat

Okay I know I’m simplifying here, but stuff doesn’t just equal money, it equals clutter, and it means a lot of moving things around to vacuum and dust. That means time spent doing something that most of us don’t particularly enjoy (whispers housework sensitively), when we could be out, about, taking in the sunshine and connecting with others, the planet, music, the theatre, all of the above and more.

What about Rome?

All roads lead to Rome not housework, not another new gadget, dress, jeans, car. Rome is somewhere amazing (substitute anywhere you like in its place), but often we don’t have holidays because we don’t have the money, or we put it all on a credit card, spend a year paying for it, and repeat.

However, there’s another aspect to a lot of stuff that causes you worry and stress in any number of ways…mental health. When did we become a society that needed so much stuff it stresses us out? Cars that may cost 1/5th of the value of our house? Cosmetic work at the age of 20? Gel nails – rather expensive and look weird two weeks later. Those nails hanging off the end of your nails fascinate me.

Mindless Fun?

So you work all your life, get a nice house together, buy an expensive TV, and spend a lot of that life indoors watching it, maybe faintly bored. Got to be honest, looking back I’ve spent far too much time living a small life, and I don’t know many people who haven’t. Mind you, the good news is that I don’t know many people.

The problem with this is the growing numbers of older people going down with dementia. I’ve known several and none of them had dynamic lives full of good memories. That’s what’s got me thinking.

Apologies for the gross generalisations but…

Yes I am generalising, but I wonder how much?

Let me stop that though. I don’t want to carry on listing litanies of misery or potential problems, that’s precisely not who I am. I guess I just wanted to suggest that we all take a step back and reflect, especially but not limited to, younger people.

I was listening to people talking about age the other day (on TV…yes I know!) and I sat there and thought “I do not believe in any of that!” I believe that you can make something of your life at any time, any age, in any decade. Yes, it may be different to what you would have done at 20, 30, and so on, but that doesn’t mean it won’t be good. Great even.

The one thing I do know is the more time and money we spend on stuff, and indoors, the less time we spend being alive. If we all had a minimalist house, sensibly priced cars, and fewer things to dust, we could spend more time looking after the two most important things in our life: our mind and body.

They, after all, will keep us alive, the sofa won’t!

To your happiness and new experiences

Deb xx


Published by debdancingstarhawken7

I'm a writer, public speaker, medium, and spiritual thinker. I suffered from acute anxiety from the age of 16 until I was well into my 50s, after fearlessly exploring many ideas, philosophies, and tools, I finally found methods that helped me return my mind to a better normal. One of the things I hated about anxiety was the way people treated me like a fool or a problem, I have two degrees and I'm a (much) retired black belt, my IQ is decent, but I constantly felt like a complete idiot, something that was exacerbated by never feeling like the real me. The girl who could laugh endlessly about the smallest things, and had a real excitement about what life had to offer her. I didn't need anyone else to tell me I wasn't 'right', I knew that better than anyone. My mission now is to support people suffering as I did with a message of support with what they're going through, tools and ideas that might help, and a strong message of hope for the future. At 63, which I am at the time of writing, many people I know are in a rut, yet having beaten anxiety I'm now doing more with my life than I ever did when I was struggling just to get up in the morning, let alone face the day. It's a wonderful feeling - so the main message is that it doesn't matter how long you've been struggling or what age you are, when you beat anxiety you will get an entirely new lease of life - and that's fantastic at any age. On a personal note I'm married to my soul mate, we have 5 cats, and I live in the middle of the UK. I follow a number of fantastic thinkers, as it's important to immerse yourself in healthy thinking as often as you can, I'm a Toastmaster and professional public speaker, and I keep life simple and encourage my clients to do the same, and my friends.

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