Writer and interior designer Mitzi Beach wrote today’s post! Enjoy, darlings!
Would you head out on a long road trip without a plan that includes specific directions, hotel reservations, or types of clothes needed? Well my dear ones, this unrealistic road trip exactly mimics digging into any downsizing endeavor without understanding the big picture (we’ll call this your map) of your current life stage. And perhaps more important, your next life stage.
You already understand that disorganization, whether conscious or unconscious, blocks your peace of mind, your productivity, and the visual attractiveness of your spaces. However, downsizing involves what you’re doing, but Lifesizing® involves your being. Let me explain.
Downsizing requires a seemingly endless amount of time sorting through boxes or closets to achieve order in your spaces. Lifesizing® on the other hand seeks a new approach to downsizing and organizing by identifying goals to succeed and thrive throughout all of life’s many transitions and life stages. If you’re curious about why you should downsize, head here.
Preparation Is Key When Downsizing Your Home
I strongly believe that every stage of life demands a Lifesizing® reset in order to achieve the wholeness or balance required to maneuver through each stage with grace, peace, and fulfillment in one’s life. This involves resetting ourselves with: attitude adjustments, putting new boundaries in place, and reaching out to others who are older and wiser, and whom we admire and respect. Lifesizing® means equipping, enlightening, and empowering oneself to grab hold of life! Squeezing each day’s potential for a richer, more fulfilling life by preparing for each life transition or life stage.
Now let’s dig into this term of downsizing. Most individuals perceive downsizing as having less, shedding unused items, reducing clutter, buying less, or sorting through boxes and boxes. And this is definitely the correct definition. I mean check out one of Honey’s favorite books ‘The Life-Changing Magic of Tidying Up’. But to most of us, hearing the term downsizing often is likened to a trip to the dentist in our perception of what lies ahead towards the tedious, soul-searching, cleaning out of our homes. I, for one, dread those almost torturous hours of sorting and agonizing over what to keep, donate, or trash. How, then, does Lifesizing give us more than merely downsizing? By acknowledging our current life stage, along with recognizing a realistic understanding of our future life stage, we can add a positive aspect to downsizing.
Downsize According To Your Life Stage
Empty nester or almost an empty nester
Working full time
Additionally is our personal status: whether married or with significant other, single, widowed, divorced, or other.
Can you now see the vast difference in these life stages and why each life stage commands a different living space for different needs? To this end, any downsizing endeavor oblivious to where one contemplates living, is again, on that trip without a map.
Let me give you our example: we had a 3800 square foot wonderful family home with bedrooms upstairs, a finished lower level for the kids to hang out, a pool, along with all the other normal family home rooms. Enter the empty nest life stage where no one used the pool or the lower level rec room, and we had 3 unused bedrooms. This beloved family home simply did not meet my husband’s and my life stage needs!
Do you see how merely downsizing and organizing homes that no longer fit the current life stage is a vastly inadequate endeavor without processing and envisioning one’s current or next life stage?
Where Do You See Yourself Living In 10-15 Years?
What is missing for most is calculating what they want their lifestyle to look like along with how they want it to function. A huge obstacle that is critical to achieving their dream or vision is to identify what type of lifestyle is essential for their own personal fulfillment. Absolutely everyone has a unique perspective on their futures!
Now, you are ready to begin your downsizing endeavor. You now know in your present situation what you absolutely need to maneuver your day-to-day living needs. You also know what items are keepers and what items will not work elsewhere.
For example, you have a huge sectional curved sofa. In all probability, this will not work in a downsized home, so recovering it could be a waste of money. However, replacing it with smaller sofas would be a much wiser use of your funds. But if you are not thinking ahead, this probably would never enter your mind! This is exactly the mental exercise to do for all possessions as a downsizing/organizing effort begins.
As in the first paragraph of my post, it is undeniably essential to plan your future life spaces by understanding each life stage’s unique and specific needs. Otherwise, as the saying goes, you’re simply spitting at the wind or being busy (downsizing) versus living in your being of Lifesizing® your life.
A note from Honey: Darlings, what are your thoughts on downsizing? Tell me in the comments below! I can’t wait to hear your thoughts and respond to you all.
About the author:
Mitzi currently lives in Ohio with her husband of 50+ years, Bob, in their downsized, thrive-in-place home. They are loving the process of organizing, upgrading, and completing their “last nest.” Mitzi has spent over 35 years as a professional interior designer, since then, she has developed and taught several Continuing Ed courses on Baby Boomer Marketing, Aging in Place Safely, and Home Trends of the Future for the 50+. You can check her out here.
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