Live in a 500 square-foot home (or maybe even smaller)? While I don’t think that I’ll be joining the tiny house movement anytime soon, I have been inspired by their take on simplicity and downsizing. If they can reduce the size of their homes, why can’t I use their principals to scale down my mind’s overload?
As the size of the average single family home in the United States increased, so have our stress levels. And, as our to-do lists swell, our anxiety escalates. How do we keep all the aspects of our lives in check? Maybe scaling down is the answer. Here’s what I’m doing to get myself to think tiny:
Cleaning the cobwebs out of the attic.
Just like a cobweb, my worrisome thoughts were entangling my mind and creating a constant uneasiness. After reading How to Stop Worrying and Start Living by Dale Carnegie, I realized that I was wasting precious time and energy agonizing over what I had no control over. Utilizing his simple techniques, I soon was able to reduce my anxiety.
Practicing the Container Store theory.
Enter the mecca of organization and its friendly staff will assure you that there is a place for everything and everything has its place. This reminds me that when I have too much on my mind, I need to try to compartmentalize my thoughts. Just like separating kitchen gadgets into little plastic baskets for easy access, I’m learning to focus on one thing at a time.
Remembering that the design is in the details.
Each tiny house is constructed with the utmost focus on space and creativity. Likewise, concentrating on whatever I am doing at the moment and paying attention to every aspect of it allows for a Zen state of mind. Try this simple exercise: next time you wash a dish, tune out the world and relish every part of the process. Just as I did, you’ll realize the benefits of practicing this in other aspects of your life.
Reminding myself that you take yourself with you wherever you go.
Add wheels to a tiny house and you have the advantages of a traditional, well-built home and an RV all in one. Once you have worked to develop a more compact and efficient thought process, you can be a bit creative and see where it takes you. I like to play “negotiation,” planning a day that includes a little treat that I promise myself and can look forward to once my to-do list is completed.
Tiny house dwellers seem to share a sense of well-being, believing that exchanging quantity for quality allows them a certain freedom. Wouldn’t it be great if we could reside in that same liberated state of mind?