Monday, July 12, 2021

Growing a Flower Took a Long Time.

Yesterday I did something we could all do a little more of and I went through and purged my closet. I spend so much time thinking about the things in my life that sometimes I fear that I have gotten this minimalism thing backwards. The whole idea is to spend LESS time and effort worried about your things. I have come to realize that for me part of this years’ long project is about doing it well and that it takes time. Am I a little more obsessive about it than I need to be, well sure, but what fun would it be to not.

I probably cleared out about a third of my closet yesterday. I folded everything up nicely and put it all into the top of my coat closet. I’ll let those things sit there for awhile just in case it turns out that I do need them.

Many of those things were items of a work wardrobe I have not worn in the 16 months since the Quarantine started. I tried everything on and looked in the mirror and I realized how much I disliked much of those clothes. There isn’t a deeper meaning here, I just didn’t like the way they fit or how they made me look. I’m a short guy and it can be hard for me to find clothes that fit well, especially work shirts and polos, etc. When I moved here at the end of 2019 I had to assemble a work wardrobe quickly and so I took what I could get. Next month, I am supposed to start going into work about 80% of the time, so by next month I will need to have a rebuilt work wardrobe. So I have a new little project: I need work clothes. 

When possible, I like to be deliberative and so now I get to be deliberative about this. I get to ask questions about how I want to look and to some degree, who I want to be, when we go back. 

As much as the purge itself, this is really the thing that we should all be doing a little more of, not fretting about our appearance, but expending some time and effort on our own lives, to check in and make sure that we like what we are are doing and that we like who we are. 

I’ve been prone to make GIANT life changes in a way that often seems to come out of the blue for people who do not live in my head, but I have a good thing going right now in life and so I am trying to do the harder work of noticing and making the smaller, mid-course corrections that keep one’s life on course.

So, small as something like a closet purge may seem, it is important. It is the kind of life maintenance that I have perhaps ignored at other times. It is like the weeding of a garden, no one weed puled makes the garden healthier, it is the accumulation of all that small effort that makes the garden healthy.

Oh, and if you’ll allow me to tortue this gardening metaphor fully to death, over the weekend, my first ever flower grew. I planted some wildflower seeds forever ago. The resulting plants have been green and leafy, but last week I notices a bud had sprouted and finally, just yesterday, it opened up into a delicate little white and yellow flower. 

How great is that?




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