Sometimes Less Isn’t More

I believe that less “stuff” (clutter, gadgets, etc.) equates to greater life satisfaction – even when the new “thing” is the recently announced Kindle Fire. 

Even though my fingers wanted to click “Pre-Order Add to Cart” to reserve this colorful touch-screen movie-watching, music playing, e-reading device made for those of us who cannot afford an iPad, my good sense prevailed.  In our world, marketing geniuses are trained to target our weaknesses (mine, a cool gadget for a low price) and push our impulse buy buttons.  Then, predictably, there is a newer, shinier version of the “whatever” that makes us want to repeat.  This is how we end up with more…more stuff and more debt.

This isn’t a post about the acquisition of “stuff” or even the new Kindle Fire, because honestly, my research on the gadget didn’t go beyond, “oooh,  colorful…shiny….pretty…”  Besides, I finally gave in and bought a regular Kindle a month-and-a-half ago.  I’ve loved the Kindle thus far, so I’m resisting the urge to toss it aside for the latest and greatest (which will be bested in a few months, no doubt.)  Remembering that the credit card bill will eventually arrive gave me the will power I needed.  I closed my browser and backed away from the computer, shaking the remnants of the NST (Newest Shiny Thing) trance out of my head.

Like tangible things, I need less worry, fewer commitments, less clutter, fewer emails trying to sell me stuff, less junk food, less preoccupation with things I cannot change, and less time spent idling in traffic during my workday commute.

I need more time with friends, family and God, more self-reflection, more gratitude, more appreciation for the moments that will be forgotten years from now, more patience, and more sleep.  Lots more sleep.

Over the last two weeks, I’ve averaged about five hours of sleep a night.  It’s taking a toll.

What was I writing about?

Oh, yes.  I need more sleep.  When I sit down for five minutes and want to nod off, that’s a clear sign that my nights need to be longer.  I have to accept that there simply aren’t enough hours in the day to do everything I need/want to do.  I’m going to do the things I can, and the rest will wait for tomorrow.

Or the next day….

And so on.

Goodnight 🙂

What do you need more of?  What about less of?  Do you have trouble fitting everything into your day?  Are you hooked by the latest technology, or do you hang a few years back?

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36 thoughts on “Sometimes Less Isn’t More

  1. suzicate September 29, 2011 / 7:53 AM

    My hubby just told me about the new Kindle Fire which puts my plain one to shame. I haven’t even had mine for a full year yet, so spending the money on an update is NOT going to happen. I haven’t even looked at the Fire. It sounds cool, but I’m so inept…one of my sons gave me an ipod touch I can barely maneuver through.I’m the type of person who gets “stuck on” things and don’t like to try new ones which is a good thing soley for the reason of saving money. I’ve concluded that I will never be techno saavy!

    • JannatWrites September 29, 2011 / 10:00 PM

      I don’t have the latest-and-greatest technology either, SuziCate. It’s too expensive to keep up with that!

      I can relate – I just got my Kindle less than two months ago. It will be years before I purchase another one. There’s nothing wrong with hanging on to what works, so don’t feel bad about that at all!

  2. momsomniac September 29, 2011 / 8:52 AM

    I need more sleep! But the baby won’t need me at night forever…

    • JannatWrites September 29, 2011 / 10:03 PM

      Ah, those young years are hard, Momsomniac. I don’t miss getting up at all hours of the night, but we still ocassionally have a middle-of-the-night nightmare to deal with.

      Hang in there 🙂

  3. Hilary Clark September 29, 2011 / 10:23 AM

    I could definitely use more sleep! I moved not long ago so I got rid of a VERY large number of tangible objects. Getting rid of the intangibles is more complicated but it’s a process I’m taking great pleasure in working on.

    • JannatWrites September 29, 2011 / 10:05 PM

      Moving is an excellent way to get rid of extra stuff. It’s amazing how fast stuff accumulates when we stay in one place.

      I agree that getting rid of the intangibles is more difficult, but good luck on that process, Hilary!

  4. Richard W Scott September 29, 2011 / 11:56 AM

    The Kindle Fire lools cool, but it has nowhere the power of an iPad, or of some of the more sohisticated knock-offs. So, I’ll be staying with my heavily used Kindle.

    As for sleep. I figured out I wasn’t getting enough when, during the time I actually make it into the REM sleep state, I started dreaming about sleeping.

    Sigh.

    • JannatWrites September 29, 2011 / 10:09 PM

      I hadn’t looked at the specs, so I’m glad you shared that it doesn’t stack up. It eases the temptation a bit.

      You made me laugh – dreaming about sleep – that’s a good one. I hope you took your body’s cue and created more sleep time, Richard 🙂

  5. Judith September 29, 2011 / 12:15 PM

    In my recent down-sizing move I had to get rid of so much extraneous junk. I didn’t consider it junk but moving from a 3 bed and study house to a 2 bed house really challenged me. But I now have very little clutter. I have no trouble sleeping in fact my late husband used to say if they gave medals I would get a gold. 🙂

    • JannatWrites September 29, 2011 / 10:14 PM

      I didn’t know you were a gold medal sleeper, Judith 🙂 Once I get myself into bed, I have no trouble sleeping either (but I do have trouble waking up!)

      I’m battling with clutter right now myself. It’s a war I plan to win.

  6. Debbie September 29, 2011 / 12:42 PM

    I’d LOVE to have more quality time for writing and less pressure to do other stuff. I know that’s every writer’s lament (or cop out!), but it’s true! Too often, I find myself doing stuff I “have” to do, when there’s a whole bucket list of things I’d rather be doing. Sigh.

    • JannatWrites September 29, 2011 / 10:17 PM

      Writing? What’s that? 🙂

      I completely relate your ‘have-to-do’s’ getting in the way of writing, Debbie. It takes some creativity to get some writing time in, but I know you can do it.

  7. nrhatch September 29, 2011 / 1:48 PM

    Good for you . . . resisting that NST trance.

    At the moment, I need more sleep. I’ve been waking up too early without going back to sleep.

    I’m rather immune to the pull of new techno gadgets. My cell phone sits in my purse for emergencies. My desktop computer is our only access to the internet. And I rarely shop on line. I did buy an e-book from Amazon this week written by a blogging friend, Nancy Curteman (Global Mysteries), and read it straight through on my Kindle for PC.

    • JannatWrites September 29, 2011 / 10:22 PM

      It was a close call, Nancy, but I think I’m safe now 🙂

      A friend of mine got a smart phone several months ago. She had tons of apps, could browse the interenet and play games. I wanted that phone. And then she told me about having to sign up for the data plan – another $30 a month. That cured me, because $360 a year is a lot of money for a phone.

      Good for you for resisting the lure of the gadgets!

  8. clarbojahn September 29, 2011 / 1:57 PM

    I’ve waited to buy a Kindle for this very reason, knowing there would be a better shinier one. I have had my eye on a Nook but that will wait even longer now. We still have a regular TV and use a Tracfone for our cell phone. We can certainly claim we don’t buy the pretty shiny new toys.
    Now there’s a real choice of tech to buy. Wonder what we’ll do next. It’s just not a priority.

    • JannatWrites September 29, 2011 / 10:25 PM

      We’re the same way, Clar. Our TV is a 36 inch that takes three grown men to lift it. I call it theft prevention 🙂

      The thing about technology is that as soon as you buy something, it’s on it’s way to being out-of-date because they are already developing something better. I think the key is just to find something with the features you want and stick with it. And then resist the urge to check out the newer offereings 🙂

  9. Carl D'Agostino September 29, 2011 / 3:32 PM

    By enda next month hope to get 100 cartoon book up on that Kindle thing.

    • JannatWrites September 29, 2011 / 10:27 PM

      Congrats on the upcoming Kindle book, Carl. That’s exciting!

      (I’m still working through the free Kindle downloads because I’m not ready to spend money on books yet :))

  10. Connor @ Citiesofthemind.org September 29, 2011 / 3:38 PM

    My roommate works at B&N. They are awesome. Awesome!

    Personally, I believe in the spartan lifestyle. I don’t have much money that doesn’t go towards either transportation or writing stuff. Oh wait. And books. God the books. The books.

    • JannatWrites September 29, 2011 / 10:29 PM

      I do like Barnes & Noble, too, Connor. I could never work there because my paycheck would go right back to them.

      Lightening up on the ‘stuff’ is the way to go. That way, if you decide to drive across the country again, you won’t have much to pack 🙂

  11. pattisj September 29, 2011 / 9:59 PM

    I’m not renewing a couple of craft magazines that expire soon, hoping to find more creative time instead of always reading about it. I do like tech devices, but we tend to lag behind somewhat–hubby doesn’t desire them. I’m not ready for a Kindle, I’ll stick with books. Most upgrades are forced, when the old breaks and needs to be replaced. We’ve lived in the same house over 30 years, so I’ve been trying to clear out some clutter. By now I know what I’ll use and not.

  12. JannatWrites September 29, 2011 / 10:31 PM

    Wow, living in the same place for 30 years…I’m sure you have your clutter-clearing work cut out for you. Good luck, Patti!

    I hope giving up the magazines affords you the time to be creative.

  13. Tori Nelson September 30, 2011 / 6:59 AM

    I am gadgetless. I just learned that people e-mail on their phones, and I must admit my mind’s a little blown!

    • jannatwrites September 30, 2011 / 7:23 AM

      I know, Tori. It’s baffling how they can send email without all the cables and cords 😉

      I have a cell phone – but get this: it only makes phone calls….no internet, no emails and absolutely no texting. Practically a relic.

  14. cuhome October 1, 2011 / 12:01 PM

    JannaT, your blogs are terrific! I really look forward to reading them!! Thank you for taking your time to share with us!!!

    • jannatwrites October 2, 2011 / 3:26 PM

      Thank you, Cuhome, for taking the time to read them 🙂

  15. pattyabr October 1, 2011 / 2:29 PM

    I just got a MacBook Pro and I bought it so I could play with it this weekend (lots of time to play on the computer) Then my daughter started talking to me about overload of technology and all. I have to say that I backed up really far from technology the past few years and stayed away from gadgets. It helped because I was really stressed in my life any way at the time. I guess I’m jumping back in but I also want some portability in my life to have access to a computer because everyone communicates with it.

    My MIL said she thought she might want an IPAD2 because people say that Apple products are easier than PC. I’m not so sure. I think everything in life is developed as habits and we are creatures of habit. I’m struggling with things that made my life easy like deleting files here and there and cleaning up my computer on the PC. I haven’t had such luck with the Mac. But I’m not giving up, because…..I don’t have a big project to complete right now and it’s a good thing because I would’ve thrown the laptop a few times if I had.

    So…if you need to use technology don’t use it when you are in a hurry. It will never compute.

    • jannatwrites October 2, 2011 / 3:31 PM

      My best friend got a Mac and loves it. I’m afraid I’m too engrained in the PC ways to fully embrace it. The iPad2 does look enticing, but the Apple software, as well as the cost, have stopped us from looking into it.

      I agree that being in a hurry or bogged down with a project is the worst time to get new technology. That is a set up for frustration.

      I’m glad you haven’t thrown you laptop! I hope you have it all figured out by the time you do have something that has to get done. Good luck, Patty!

  16. Widdershins October 1, 2011 / 4:26 PM

    I just let the latest fads roll by me on their way to obsolescence and wait until the third or fifth generation arrive.

    By then all the quirks and bugs are usually ironed out, and if the technology gets to that stage then I’m fairly sure it’ll stick around longer than the usual six months life-span of some of the crap that’s being touted as the latest must-have gizmo will.

    • jannatwrites October 2, 2011 / 3:33 PM

      I think waiting is a better way to go, Widdershins. You save a ton of money that way, too 🙂

  17. cuhome October 3, 2011 / 11:21 AM

    Widdershins, you got it right!

  18. J. P. Cabit October 3, 2011 / 2:10 PM

    Yeah, I got that email. 🙂

    I’m not a Kindle fan, so thus far I haven’t been tempted to commit senseless sins of selfishness for electric e-reading entities.

    BUT…I do have a sort of clothes-horse thing, as well as a trash “fetish” where if I see something in the trash that looks like it may hold interior decoration potential, you guessed it…that’s my temptation. 🙂

    One thing I need more of? WRITING TIME!!! I’ve taken the past couple days off from work and it’s given me AMPLE writing time. Tomorrow I start work again, which will be hopefully not as crumby as I’m expecting it to be. Singers gotta sing. Painters gotta paint. Botanists need to…botanify…and bankers have to bank. I’m a writer. I gotta write.

    Thus ends my rant for the day 😀

  19. jannatwrites October 4, 2011 / 12:32 AM

    I also end up buying clothes I don’t need (they are definitely ‘wants’) when I find bargain prices – I can’t pass them up.

    I’m with you, Seph – more writing time would be wonderful. I’d like to be greedy and ask for a little bit more blog reading time, too.

    I hope your work week goes well and that you do find time to write.

    • J. P. Cabit October 4, 2011 / 1:29 PM

      Oh, yes!!! Salvage stores are my best enemy and WORST friend.

  20. cuhome October 4, 2011 / 1:53 PM

    That’s so funny . . . I have a good friend, a social worker no less, with a garage full of hats that were on sale, in fact such a good sale, she couldn’t pass them up . . . 🙂

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