Clarity is … knowing

Clarity is knowing when you need something, and when to give it away.

There are plenty of things that I want. I’ve come to realize, that there’s not much that I need. I have a way to serve others without being overtly altruistic. It’s subtle. I won’t receive any accolades for it. It’s a part of my world view that I do this without expecting anything in return. I’m just surprised more people don’t do it. It’s not entirely my idea. I learned a lot from my daughter Phoenix who spent the better part of the last five years doing something extremely similar. The five years during and after college when most twenty something year olds are scrambling to acquire money, stuff, cars, homes, she spent it giving what little she had away.

Not as an altruistic gesture with a Tumblr, Snapfish or Instagram to document evidence of it. Though, I have admired Rob Greenfield’s rally to the world to see how it’s done. I’m influenced by Rob Greenfield.

My method is simpler. Once a year, I put all the unwanted, or underneeded ‘stuff’ that we have (and we all have WAY too much stuff) out for a yard sale. We make a little money and treat ourselves with it. This year, the four members of my household found a movie and enjoyed a Sunday of movie, meal and much laughter. Then, (and I’m so sorry neighbors for the eyesore)…. we leave it up. There is a LOT of stuff left.

We put a sign on it that reads, “take what you need. leave what you want” with a self serving “money can“. If people can pay a little for the stuff, GREAT. AND then, we leave it alone. My theory is, some people who walk by here may really need the money more than the stuff. My philosophy is, one person’s treasure is another person’s junk. We love to go garage treasure hunting. Our art is upcycled.

In our world that we’re filling up with so much clutter, we’re not seeing the oceans through the plastic. We’re not seeing the trees through the companies that cut them down faster than new ones can grow. And we’re not seeing the people who really need stuff and money, through the arrogance of our own need to impress the passersby with our stuff.

Clarity is slowing down to take a really good look around. Our aesthetic world needs us to keep it alive and well. Not only for us, but for anyone who passes by, for everyone who sees the importance of helping each other.

IF you’re in, hold a “Take What You Need, Leave What You Want” Sale in your driveway…. but leave it up for a week or so. That way, those who need but also have pride, can do so in the quiet of the darkness. Respect people, even if they have little. They are people first.

About the author: Karen E.M. Henry is a transitions life coach, writer and speaker. She specializes in working with people who want to create positive changes and savor who they want to be. Her full bio can be found at:!about-karen-e-m-henry-ma/c11k

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