This week we’d like to introduce you once again to Open Shed. Much like ourselves, they see the true value in reuse. They encourage us to “take another look at our stuff,” which we don’t use anymore and think about other people who might. So if you’ve got a lawn mower, power drill, tent or even sporting equipment that you never use, don’t let it sit in the shed gathering dust and/or rust. Rent it out to someone who needs it. So now they get to use your stuff and you make some extra cash!
Learn a little more about Open Shed, in their own words, in our guest blog below. Enjoy
If happiness is our goal, we should be focusing on accumulating experiences, rather than stuff. Research has found that we get much more satisfaction from spending our money on experiences, rather than buying bright new shiny objects. This might seem a little counter intuitive since we get to keep the stuff for as long as we want, while experiences will always end. However, the research says that an experience gives us enduring satisfaction, while the shiny new object quickly loses it shine. The experience endures in our memories, the stories we tell and can impact on our own sense of self.
Don’t get me wrong, I’m certainly not advocating the end of buying, of course there are still things that we need. But don’t you think that if our things aren’t contributing to our happiness, it is perfectly valid to ask how much stuff do we actually need to own?
About 50 years ago we started on this current hyper consumption path. We were told we needed to consume for the sake of the economy, so consume we did…
But all this buying hasn’t necessarily improved our lives, nor is it making us feel like we have more. I recently read in G Magazine that more than 60% of us believe we can’t afford to buy everything we need – and this figure includes nearly half of those in the richest 20% of the population. One of the results of this kind of thinking says G Magazine is that 30% of full-time workers are deferring happiness, by working in unsatisfying jobs in the belief that the sacrifice will pay off in the long term. Unsurprisingly almost 50% of workers reported feeling blue or depressed at work at least twice a month.
Our thinking about needs and wants have been warped in a very negative and worrying way. But there are ways that you can regain a positive perspective. A physical clean out is a really great way for you to realise just how much stuff you already have! By refocusing your attention on what to do with all your excess stuff, you are diverted from thinking about what else you believe you need. Whether you call it decluttering, spring cleaning or editing your life (a new term I heard recently in this TED talk) it is a great way to empower yourself.
So, this coming weekend, why don’t you focus on decluttering just one space in your home. Split your stuff into three piles:
1. stuff you regularly use – return it to its action station!
2. stuff you occasionally use, but still want to keep – list on it Open Shed so someone else can make use of it, when you’re not.
3. Stuff you can’t believe you have kept – find it a new home via Ziilch!
Co-founder Open Shed