Table Talk #25 A Big Announcement & Minimalism

Welcome & Introduction: I’m Joy from Right now you can go on the site and purchase the book, Love and Respect, that is rocking my 2017. Even if you’ve read it, you need to read it again.

Announcement: I’ve talked about my journey facing my fears and the weakness of my faith, especially in Table Talk 20. Go back and watch. One of our big decisions was moving—we felt an overwhelming sense that we were supposed to move to Jackson, even though we love our little town about 40 minutes away.

At first, all we could see were the reasons why NOT to move—we have to rent again (we want to buy), it’s more expensive, it’s farther away from our home school community, it’s way more expensive, we’ve gotten to know the families in the valley, MO MONEY!

But as we continued to walk the talk and pursue housing in Jackson, our eyes focused on God only, we began to see His “divine direction” in sending us there: no more commute for my husband = over 400 hours a year we get back with him, getting to know the community in Jackson which is where our church is, where our framily is (I’ve always felt myself not fully bonding with the families in the valley because I knew they were so far from Jackson where we’d eventually move, and I didn’t want to tear that apart), feeling like a visitor on Easter (and as the children’s director needing to know the families!), God provided a CHEAPER place to live so we’re actually saving money, and the grace to be so isolated in our little mountain town is lifting. We need community!

So, we’re moving . . . into 750 square feet rental, no yard. I can focus on all the reasons why that seems like a step backward, but this week God’s been revealing to me why that’s a step FORWARD:

  1. We can get in a better place financially (which you will NEVER hear from people moving TO Jackson)
  2. We position ourselves to buy in Jackson because preference is given to current residents.
  3. We have community. I can’t underscore the importance of this enough. I’ve already started dreaming of coffee dates with friends, play dates for the girls, and all sorts of outings we are going to take.
  4. And our time and energy can shift focus from commuting and doing twice the work because we’re doing it alone to RELATIONSHIPS.

Minimalism: And that leads me to talk about minimalism. Two different podcasts this week which have nothing to do with minimalism have talked about minimalism (Simplicity Parenting on Young House Love and Josh Becker Becoming Minimalist on Healthy Moms Podcast). And I picked up The Life-Changing Magic of Tidying Up. I’m not going to extremes (like 5 forks for five people, etc.) But what’s naturally happening is . . .

Going from 1900 sq feet and a two-car garage to 750 sq feet is a challenge. And to prepare, I’ve been paring down our stuff.

  1. Throwing away things that in a year or two I’ll wonder why I moved those heavy boxes AGAIN only to never open or use their contents.
  2. I’ve done enough garage sales to know what sells and what doesn’t. If it won’t sell in a garage sale, (or if it’ll only sell for a few cents), then I skip the hassle and donate it.
  3. Selling what will sell.

Obviously we will need to rent a storage unit too. But I REFUSE to store boxes or stuff that I will not use (or things I will probably not use). My friends spent two years in Korea and paid for a storage unit while gone. Then they came back and threw away more than 75 percent of what they stored. That will not be us! If we store it, we will use it.

Which brings me to all the minimalism talks and what it really confirmed for me as the biggest benefit to downsizing and moving (and the focus for this next stage in life)—less stuff that requires our attention and needs to clean = more time to focus on relationships.

I’m going to have more time to date my husband, to date my girls, to hang out with friends, to get to know families in Jackson. And you can’t put a price on that.

Recap: Less stuff = more time for things that matter (relationships), and that’s the biggest benefit of minimalism. So I use that for my standard when deciding whether to keep something or throw away/sell/donate. Is it going to add value to my relationships, or is it more stuff that’s going to take away valuable time from the things that matter most—people.

CTA: Talk to me—what are your thoughts/experiences with minimalism? Comment, share a post and tag @thementorstable, email me for practical steps. Send me your links of what you’ve learned. I want to hear from you.

April 27, 2017

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  1. I love this so much! You are really an inspiration to me. I have a struggle, though. I have moved about a dozen times in my life, and sold or given away most of my stuff each time. This minimalist purge feels great. However, once I get into my next house, I see how difficult and how much more work goes into being a minimalist. And as a result, I’m spending less time with people, because I don’t have a place for guests to sit, I don’t have a big enough pan to cook for a large group, I don’t have a dish washer so I spend hours washing by hand, etc. Inevitably, I end up acquiring lots of items again in order to spend time with and serve others. However, then when it’s time to move again, I’m frustrated with all my junk and give much of it away again! The cycle starts over. Do you have any suggestions for this back-and-forth lifestyle I’ve developed?

    1. That’s a great question! It reminds me of a point I didn’t have a chance to make in my talk. Some of choosing what to store and what to sell/give away has been determined by moving experience. Like you, I’ve moved a lot, and when I did my cross-country move, I had to leave a lot behind because there simply wasn’t room. And I found out really quickly what my priorities are. Like your serving pots and hospitality furniture, I found that outdoor furniture and flower pots were really important to me. And while I wished I had brought them with me, I couldn’t immediately justify the cost to replace them in our new home. So, with this move, I’ll be storing some bigger items (like outdoor furniture, grill, etc.) because the reality is that I will miss them, use them right away when I have a chance, and they enrich my relationships with others. Take note of what you need to entertain people right away in your new home, and assign enough value to those things that you keep move them no matter what. And if an item isn’t necessary for entertaining, then sell that one. You can do this! You’re already well on your way to doing a more intentional purge for the next move. =)

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