Thursday, August 7, 2014

For When You're Living in a Fantasy World

Do you have a "fantasy self"?  The incredible culinary whiz.  The super-fit, all-star athlete.  The award winning musical virtuoso.  The fabulously creative entrepreneur.

Acquired a whole lot of stuff along the way to becoming someone you never quite became?

Kitchen cabinets jammed with stacks of unopened gourmet cookbooks and expensive cooking widgets {that were maybe used once or twice}.

A garage packed with all manner of big-ticket sports equipment {from at least a generation ago}.

The cache of musical instruments stuffed in the back of a musty closet or two {from way back in elementary school}.

Overflowing boxes laden with dusty, unused craft supplies {from the '80s}.

Clothes bought on a whim stored in a rarely-opened garment bag {with the tags still attached}.

Painful piles of memorabilia from a love, a friendship, a relationship {that's long since departed}.

Writer and blogger Francine Jay muses, "Do you have a fantasy self?  And if so, how much of your clutter belongs to it?
 
All too often, we hold on to stuff because it represents who we think we should be, rather than who we are.  Sometimes our fantasy selves are meant to impress others; sometimes they’re relics of our past; sometimes they’re fantasies about our future.
 
Whatever the case, it’s important to remember: acquiring stuff for your fantasy self doesn’t make it a reality.  Most of the time, it only leads to a lot of “nice” clutter you never actually use."

Check out her list of 10 fantasy personalities.

I've said good-bye to the pasta machine I used once.  Hundreds of carefully cut-out, never used magazine recipes stashed in wrinkled old folders.  The dozens of once-loved cross-stitch books.  The piano that saw hour after hour of faithful practice.  Stacks and stacks of paper and cards and notes from eons ago.  Photos of people I couldn't even identify.  My husband's trumpet from high school.  Some collectibles and lots of tchotchkes that have long since lost their charm.

Most recently it was a whole, dusty file drawer of every note and test I ever took, every handout I ever laid my eyes on, everything I ever wrote through college and graduate school. {Yes, I saved a few papers ...}

There's lots more to go. 'Cause I'm not now who I was then.

You, too?
 
What kind of stuff is heading out your door these days?
 
 
 

 
 
PIN IT * TWEET IT * SHARE IT
the links are below

SUBSCRIBE TO IT

23 comments:

  1. I'm not sure about the fantasy self, but I can say that the "stuff" I keep has changed over the years. I'm hoping that is a sign that I am more eternally focused. Two years ago I moved from a 3bedroom, 3,000 sq ft house to a one bedroom cottage. Most of my "stuff" is packed away right now. Honestly, besides maybe my crafts, I can't say I miss much :)

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. Oh ... a 1 bedroom cottage sounds just too lovely! Who needs all that other stuff anyway!

      Except the crafts, yes. Those treasured supplies tucked away speak to your creative soul. I love that, June ...

      Delete
  2. Yes, I once had a fantasy self of my own and that contributed much of my physical clutter (and mental clutter as well, as those unused items became the symbol of my unfulfilled dreams). I've been decluttering since, and now I only acquire things I really use. Its party of my "becoming" process and it's been liberating. But come to think of it, I still have a collection of pretty beads tucked away in a closet (I thought I would be a jewelry designer one day). Haha! I better either get rid of them or use them in a mixed media art project. You make me think, Linda! xx

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. Oh oh ... a mixed media art project! YES! That would be so cool, Yuko!

      ;-}

      Delete
  3. The great thing about living in a really small space---you cull out all the fantasies and get back to who you are. It has not been a bad thing! I think about everything I look at to purchase---Do I REALLY need that? Most things I do not! Good reminder, Linda! Thanks!

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. It's amazing how little we really need, isn't it, Lulu. And there's nothing like moving into a small space ... or visiting someone in a third world country ... to realize how overwhelmed with unnecessary possessions we truly are.

      ;-{

      Delete
  4. I love the freeing feeling of getting rid of clutter! Although there is always more that can go....

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. We do move more freely in every way when we're carrying less baggage.

      Yes, Sarah!

      Have a light and easy weekend ...

      Delete
  5. I certainly have the "clutter" that could accompany my fantasy self. I have been working hard this summer going through 30 years worth of school teacher stuff. Oh my! Much of it is being repurposed in the hands of younger teachers but there is still those items that need to be pitched. The memories make it hard to part with these things at times but I'm still plugging away. I think I need a one room cottage when I retire so I can't store too many things. I wonder what I would keep??? This post has me thinking. Thank you and happy weekend!

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. Don't you just love repurposing stuff ... passing it on to someone else that'll breathe new life back into its soul? Let's hear it for all you teachers getting ready to get back in the saddle in the next few weeks!!

      Appreciate you, Mary ...

      Delete
  6. Hi Linda! You got rid of a piano? Really? That is gutsy. I love music...I hope you gave it to a child so you can visit it now and again.
    Good point about 'stuff' and my fantasy self. I never thought about it in this way before. I'm not sure who my fantasy person is, so I'll have to think about that for while. I'll cruise over and check out the examples your blog-friend mentioned. Hmmm.. I don't have too many things that I won't throw out, except for those cute clothing articles I think I'll fit into 'someday'! So maybe my fantasy self is a supermodel :)

    Nice to be back and see you again! I've missed your insights...
    Ceil

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. Dear Supermodel ~ Welcome back! So glad to see you 'round these parts again.

      And, not to worry. The piano went to our youngest daughter ... it makes me smile to hear her kids plunking away on it. Sure beats sitting around here collecting dust!

      ;-}

      Delete
  7. Oh my yes, I have decades of accumulative fantasy self “stuff” – and I’m not a saver. I pride myself in being fairly clutter-free and a minimalist. And yet, the stuff attached to my fantasy self have held high regard in my storage areas. I have notes from past speaking engagements, binders full of seminar material, even past board reports and college papers from students I taught in my three short years as an adjunct professor. It’s laughable now. I know the freedom I crave comes from one place – Christ alone. My true identity is him. I need to do another weeding out. Great post and prompt, Linda. Blessings to you.

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. Yep, I've still got the textbooks from my adjunct professor days. And WHY? Really?

      I think they're heading out the office door the next time I take a bag to the donate bin at the library. Looks like you ended up prompting me, Pat. And that, I love.

      Have a light and carefree week, my friend ...

      Delete
  8. Every 5 years, I go through a purge and have rid myself of a lot of stuff. I'm in a place where I know who I am now and who I don't have to be - so most of the clutter right now tells a story - however, I am getting ready for another purge - in probably a year - and I'll keep whittling away. I'm not a minimalist - though I try to be (and that right there would be a topic for a post! LOL) I'm sure much more will be emptied out as more of the boys move out! So glad your piano is still in the family - and being used!

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. 'I'm in a place where I know who I am now and who I don't have to be.'

      Yes, yes, yes, Mary Leigh. I think you've hit the nail on the head. When we know WHO we are and WHOSE we are, all the things we've grabbed onto seem to fade in significance. And we can begin to let them go, one {or two or three} item at a time.

      I so appreciate what you've brought to the table today, friend. I am glad you're here ...

      Delete
  9. I seem to be on an every other year purge cycle. I did a major possession purge in 2011 and then again last summer in 2013. In those two purges I felt like I let go of a lot of fantasy self stuff (recipes and art supplies come to mind) as well as information.

    I am an information gatherer and have found it freeing that so much of what I used to have to keep as paper files I can now either store on a computer or find online or even store books on my kindle.

    One of my main objectives for the last year has been to radically limit what I bring INTO my home and not refill the spaces I emptied. This has helped both with clutter and my budget :)

    This was an interesting post, Linda. Thanks for sharing and I'm glad the piano went to good use!
    Dar

    ReplyDelete
  10. Cool that your decision making not only influenced your clutter, but also your wallet, Dar. Makes us all stop a moment and wonder how much more financially secure we'd be if we hadn't shopped til we dropped along the way ...

    And as a fellow information gatherer, I can only say amen. I'm slowly working through several office file drawers which are filled to overflowing with outdated bits and pieces gathered from conferences, classes, magazines, etc.

    Sigh.

    All I can do is adios to it all.

    Thanks for dropping by on your lunch hour, sweet lady!

    ReplyDelete
  11. I am a big time hoarder but thanks to the international relocations that I have had in the last few years... I discarded a lot of stuff at every move. Had it not been for the relocation, I would have hung on to all the useless things, with the hope of putting it to use SOME day!

    -Tanya
    http://tanyaanurag.blogspot.com

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. Oh yes, Tanya! Nothing like a big move to make us reconsider what we're hauling around. Just the expense would be enough to do us in! Your words of experience are a big encouragement for us to travel ahead lightly ...

      I'm grateful that you're here in community with us!

      Delete
  12. I got rid of my beloved piano a few years back because it was just taking up too much room in our small house. I miss it a lot but I do love the openness and space it's absence provides us. I'm still clutching to my violin in hopes that I will one again play (or maybe my youngest will?). I know a budding violinist would enjoy it. Maybe if I find a child in need of a violin I can finally release my grasp............

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. Oh ... would you play again? That would be so cool. Val! I can actually envision you with those strings ...

      If that's where you want to head, well ... you go, girl! Keep me posted, ok?

      ;-}

      Delete
  13. Yes! I realized years ago that I have the continual urge to buy clothes for the life I WISH I led, and not the actual life I lead. You wouldn't believe how many useless things I bought for that fantasy person in the last few decades. Argh!

    ReplyDelete

Welcome to the table, friend!

This is where we gather and hang out. I'd love for you to pull up a chair and jump right into the conversation. Or simply say 'hello.'

l'll be dropping in to visit you sometime soon ...

Linda

Related Posts Plugin for WordPress, Blogger...