When we moved into our current place, we did so knowing full well that we would have to get rid of lots of crap due to the fact that it's roughly 700 square feet smaller than our old house. It was actually a process and a goal that we were looking forward to, going through our accumulated belongings and purging that which we no longer needed or wanted, relieving ourselves of those objects which may or may not have once performed a meaningful service, but now serve no more purpose than a dusty old millstone. In the end, we would come out on the other side lighter, freer, and bearing less of the burden that comes with unnecessary stuff.
We did much of the purge before the move, and it did indeed have the relieving affect that we'd expected. The things we gave away or trashed were easily, gladly parted with. Both The Ash and I are pretty well able to compartmentalize our sentimental feelings down to a few small things, so there was next to no second-guessing regarding any of the items that went on the chopping block. We got rid of a lot, but as we stuffed boxes into closets in the new place, filling them to capacity and then some, we knew that a day would come when we'd have to do more.
We managed to put it off for a time, but today brought us to a point where all those boxes had to come out to face the harsh light of judgment. We made some decisions. We filled some trash bags. We gave lotsa shit away. It felt good, hell, great. I can't say if we're done, but we're better off than we were.
I have an idealist fantasy of living a life where I make no more of a footprint than I have to in order to live and be happy. No unnecessary crap, minimum frills, no taking up more than I need of anything. Interpretations of what that means can, of course, run an incredibly wide gamut, but it seems like a good general rule to live by, to order other life rules by. I know full well that we don't live like this today, not as well as we could or should, but it's a goal. And a hope.