Feed on

Today marks Week Five of my new Friday series on small-space-living.  As I was putting it all together I felt I needed to make sure I took a moment to talk about one of the biggest obstacles I have faced while living in a small home.  It has nothing to do with size and everything to do with my attitude.  This has truly been a journey, and I hope you’ll hang in here with me as we continue along. :)

If you are new to my blog and you would like to catch up on my small space living series, you can do so by clicking on the following links:

Week 1

Week 2

Week 3

Week 4

There is nothing more stressful than playing the “keeping up with the Joneses” game.  And I’ll confess, I am guilty of playing this at various seasons in my life.  And I think if we were all willing to be gut-wrenchingly honest, there is probably a small part of us that is always looking at someone else’s life…and comparing.

We could blame it on the American dream.  The one that tells us that true happiness is a beautiful home, a happy marriage, two-and-a-half children, a dog, and a pristine minivan/SUV/station wagon/Hybrid something…take your pick.  And until we’ve attained all these things we’re somehow missing out on the good life.  But the world is a different place today.  I’m not going to say that the American dream is dead, but I do believe it has changed .  And I find the most challenging obstacle for me in all of this is not so much the American dream – that sort of sits out there in space somewhere just out of my reach – but changing my mindset.

Letting go of the American dream.  This is not to say that we won’t one day move into a more spacious home (I’m not anti-large home at all).  But if that is our number-one goal, then I wonder if we’ve gotten off track somewhere.  I wonder if chasing after the American dream is really what life is supposed to be about.  And if this is all we’re striving for, I think we’re going to be very discouraged and frustrated when life takes a turn in a different direction.  There are some things that are simply out of our control, and the best way to live at peace with ourselves and our circumstances, is pull out of the rat race that tells us what we need or should have, and start living in the present.  Making the most of the life God has given us today.

I could go on and on about how to maximize small spaces, how to organize and stay organized, and how to successfully purge your house of miscellaneous papers and such, but all that is meaningless until your mindset has changed.  First, get to that point where the American dream is either forgotten or placed on the back burner for a while.  It is only then that you can move forward and embrace small-space living.  There is no reward for trying to keep up with other people.  It will surely drive you mad and drive you deep into debt.

So, before we go any further, I would urge you to do a little soul searching.  Discover what unfulfilled dreams you’ve been holding on to that only seem to keep you from moving ahead, come to grips with where you are, and ask God to give you a fresh perspective.  Only then can you find the peace you’ve been longing for.  And only then can you embrace your sweet small space.

“Contentment does not come from the acquisition of what you want.  It comes from the appreciation of how much you already have.” – Ray Noah, Lead Pastor, Portland Christian Center

Next week we’ll look at ways to create individual spaces out of extra space.  Time to get those creative juices flowing!

If you're new here, you may want to subscribe to my RSS feed. Thanks for visiting!

One Response to “Welcome to my world…before we go any further”

  1. Lisa says:

    This is so good! Thank you for the reminder of how my attitude about what we have is so much more important than anything else.

Leave a Reply