The Urge to Purge.

The Urge to Purge.

It’s December 29. It’s time to really think about what I want from the new year so that I can start it out on the right foot.

I don’t want to have 1,000 emails in my inbox. That’s 1,000 messages that I should have paid attention to the day each showed up, but I didn’t. I’m letting too much in. I’m not selective about what I promise my time to and then I wonder why I have no time. Next year I will be more selective about who I let in. I will delete the email subscriptions that are no longer important to me. I will not be bullied by my gmail.

I don’t want to have a house full of things I don’t need, want, use, love. I don’t want to have a house full of someone else’s keepsakes. I don’t want to feed into the culture of materialism or buy into the notion that if I just get more containers it won’t feel like I have so much stuff. I’m done with stuff.

I don’t want to be overweight, filling my mouth and stomach with fat and sugar and salt. There’s no pleasure in food for me anymore and, arguably, there shouldn’t have been from the start. At least not in the way I expected there to be.

I’m so tired. I think 2013 might have been my most tired year yet, despite the fact that I slept more this year than I have in the past six. I’m tired because of all of the excess. It’s weighing me down, both literally and figuratively.

On the road to minimalism, the road to simplicity, 2014 is going to be the year of the purge.


I’m submitting this post to the final moonshine grid of 2013. Click through to check out what other writers have shared.

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21 Responses to “The Urge to Purge.”

  1. I’m feeling the urge when it comes to papers, toys, junk drawers, and emails as well.

    And 1,000? Ha! I have almost 5,000. And that’s just in my main mailbox. My friend Anna has been systematically going through her inbox through her blog’s FB page. She’s down to 2,000 or so.

    • michellelongo says:

      I like Anna’s page, so I’ve been seeing her counts and feeling nauseous on her behalf. I can’t deal with stuff in my inbox. I also have 4 other accounts that need attention, but this is the most used and therefore the biggest problem.

      I just want to wake up each day and go to sleep each night not feeling overwhelmed. It won’t be easy, but the end result will be so worth it.

  2. believe it or not, your Aunt Hoarder is also feeling the weight of the stuff and longs for space that doesn’t involve tripping over all the other important things I “can’t” get rid of to get to the project I am working on.
    You are a great cook, so once you are committed to not eating for comfort, you will truly enjoy food again. I will cheer you on in your journey, hope you return the favor!

    • michellelongo says:

      I think that at one point or another most of us get tired of the stuff, so I believe it.

      I hope I can enjoy food again. Right now, I need a break, which I can’t take because I have to eat. It’s an odd situation to be in.

      Thanks for the kind words and of course I’ll be cheering you on too!

  3. I am totally with you here.

  4. Stacie says:

    I so need to purge. It’s just become such a huge thing that I can’t even make myself start. How? I know I could start small, one drawer at a time. But why don’t I?

    • michellelongo says:

      It really is hard to get started. I’m trying to clear out the basement and attic first, but it’s taking forever because I’m trying to sell rather than just toss. I’ll be stepping up the effort in January because I really want it done.

  5. Stacie says:

    PS I hope 2014 is the year of being less tired and much happier.

  6. Karen says:

    That’s great! You are going to feel SO much better. I started reading Joshua Becker’s blog, Becoming Minimalist, just over a year ago, and since then, Mo and I have relinquished more than half of our possessions. We now love in a tiny house, in a tiny town, and we have much more manageable lives.

    Start out slow (room by room over time works great), so you don’t feel overwhelmed. Good luck! I’m excited for you!

    • michellelongo says:

      I’m trying to remind myself that all of it is going to take time and that there will be entire days I devote to this and when I turn around it will look like nothing was accomplished, but that won’t be true. I think that’s what always gets me down, that feeling of overwhelm that I’ll never be done. One thing at a time, one day at a time.

      Good for you on your accomplishments!! It’s always good to hear from others who have done it and lived to tell the tale.

  7. Natalie DeYoung says:

    Me too – I am so with you. Now to overcome the tiredness and start to weed through the crap…

    • michellelongo says:

      I’m convinced half the reason I’m so tired is because I eat so terribly. I think the dietary changes I need to make will be harder than any of my other goals combined.

  8. tedstrutz says:

    Gmail is killing me too… and I’ll make the same resolutions I’ll not keep. The good thing about gmail is, is that it brings me my writerly friends. As are as the rest… yeah put me down for attempting to eat better and I’m sure my house is messier than yours… I’ll try to do something about that. Maybe today… no, tomorrow… there’s a bunch of stories to read.

  9. I’ve got the urge to purge too. We have an office that is now just a place where we throw all the stuff we didn’t want to unpack in the move, and is now a complete disaster that gives me itchy fingers.

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