I recently read a book titled — Goodbye Things by Fumio Sasaki published in Japan in 2015, but sold over 150,000 copies. The 36-year-old Sasaki describes how he lived alone in a one-room Tokyo apartment and decided to change things drastically by starting a minimalist life. Like many colleagues and friends, he had spent almost all his earnings on books, CDs, and DVDs until it hit him that there was little or no happiness in getting more stuff. The things we possess suck up our time, our energy, and our freedom.

There are limits to the capacity of your brain, your energy and your time.

Fumio Sasaki

Think about all the objects and stuff you have in your house or office. Take note of the guilt and regret you carry around inside for not making good use of them. Most of us have rooms, garage, and storage space packed with things we took up as hobbies, got tired of and put away.

I have spent close to three months now getting rid of things. I sold most of them and but also gave many to my friends. I utilized the 55 tips Sasaki recommended to help you say goodbye to stuff: starting with the stuff were clearly junk such as broken electronics. Then I moved to throw away possessions I hadn’t used for a year.

Our net-worth is not measured by all the things we possess. Remove from your brain that prase “Whoever ends up with the most toys wins.” Sasaki takes to heart the words and examples of minimalists such as Mother Teresa, Mahatma Gandhi, and Greek philosopher Diogenes. We also remembered a quote from Edwin Teale wo said:

Reduce the complexity of life by eliminating the needless wants of life, and the labors of life reduce themselves.

Edwin Teale Wo

Our homes aren’t museums so they don’t need to have house collections of our things. Having fewer possessions takes away the stress they cause by soaking up our energy and draining us with the bad habit of comparisons. In place of these negatives, there is a positive influence of Zen Buddhism in Japan; the spiritual tradition model of the value of austerity and thrift. Sasaki does a good job mapping the minimalist path and reports on the results.

After dispensing all my excess, I have a total sum of about 50 items including clothes, kitchen bottles, and a toothbrush in my bathroom.