In my quest to live an uncluttered life, I’m reminded from time-to-time that convenience and efficiency don’t always coincide with fewer physical objects. An example of this, at least in our home, can be explained with scissors.
In theory, we only need one pair of scissors. We could begrudgingly survive with just one pair, and having seven pair likely seems excessive to a minimalist. However, for the sake of convenience, we have a pair that I use with food in the kitchen, another is in our present wrapping kit, I’ve got one in my clothes closet to cut off stray threads and tags, one in my desk drawer and one in my husband’s desk, a hefty pair in with my gardening supplies, and there is a small pair in the bathroom that is sanitized and stored in our emergency medical kit.
For our family, having fewer than seven pair of scissors would be frustrating. We’d waste time hunting down the one pair of scissors, and there would likely be more than one person needing the scissors at a time.
Another obvious example of this is clothing. Sure, we could get by with just one change of clothes, but it would be extremely inconvenient to have to do laundry every night.
Uncluttering isn’t about having the fewest things, it’s about having the right amount of things for your life. Clutter is any distraction that gets in the way of the life you desire — and sometimes, having too few things can be just as distracting as having too many.
As you are going through the uncluttering process, remember that there isn’t a competition to see who can have the fewest things. The purpose of uncluttering is to right-size your possessions and commitments so that you can focus on what matters to you most.