My thanks to someone I have never met

Live With Less - decluttter, impact life, stuff

As a small business owner, I am faced with a lot of decisions every single day. Aside from my accountant who files my taxes every year, I’m not at a point where I need or want to hire someone to handle my bookkeeping, social media or writing. In all honesty, I love writing my blogs each week and I love getting feedback from my awesome blog subscribers as they read my weekly posts. It’s quite an ego-boost to know I’m impacting people and how they live.

The reason I got into professional organizing was not necessarily to help people to contain their stuff. Really, I wanted to impact people by asking questions that cause them to really think about their stuff in a different way. "How is this serving me?" "How might it help someone else?" "What if I gave myself the gift of space?"

I write all of this because, way before my business, Live With Less, was a twinkle in my eye, in 2009 I started following a guy who gave himself the nickname of No Impact Man (Colin Beavan is his real name). The goal of No Impact Man was/is to live his life with as little environmental impact as possible.

Colin really made me think about consumerism in a different way. He made me think about community in a different way. And, as such, he impacted how I run and operate my business. That’s a pretty big deal.

I receive regular email posts from Colin, a.k.a. No Impact Man, and the one I received this week really touched me, so I wanted to share with you, my Live With Less family, because it really makes one think about how they are living their life and offers questions for consideration. I share this because this is how I want to inspire and empower my Live With Less clients.

So…without further adieu, here’s a letter Colin Beavan wrote to a classroom of eighth graders, which he gave his readers permission to share with others:

Dear all you eighth graders!!

What kind of life do you want and what kind of world do you want to live in? Take the time to ask yourself this question very deeply. Don't ask your mom or your dad or your teacher. Ask your soul and your heart and your spirit. What world do I want? What life do I want? Who do I want to help and how do I want to help them?

Remember that getting the right job and the right house and having the right stuff is fun but it is not the point of life. We are all going to die. What lives on after your body disappears? What do you want to leave behind?

The so-called grown-ups are screwing up the world. Many of you know better than the grown-ups. Believe in yourself!!

Now: Don't let anyone tell you that your vision for the world and your life is wrong. Pursue it. But make sure it helps others. It is okay to want things for yourself but only if it helps others too. That doesn't mean you have to deprive yourself. That means you have to help yourself in a way that helps the world and help the world in ways that help yourself.

Your teacher asked me about the small things that could help. To hell with the small things! Do big things!! Make your whole life about helping the world in the special way that only you can. I promise you that that is the life that will rock the most. Have fun with it. Be naughty with it. Play with it.

See you on the other side!!


Thank you, Colin Beavan, for impacting me by causing me to think about “stuff” differently and for influencing me so deeply. Live With Less might not be in existence if it weren’t for you.

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