We Need Less than We Think

Emily van Rijn

 Tips to Keep From Being Overwhelmed #2

2. We need less than we think.

This is not always true. I remember my sister saying she hadn't realized how many clothes newborn babies go through in a day! She needed to get more for hers. But in general, we often think we need a lot more clothes, toys, linen, dishes etc. than we actually do.

For example, on most days I only wear one outfit. Two at the most.  So in the morning when I get dressed, I only need one outfit. There are only seven days in a week. There's only four weeks in a month.  When Lydia had complications after her heart surgery, I ended up in Starship hospital with only 2-3 changes of clothes.  I was surprised to find it was actually enough! While it's not practical to live with so few clothes (and I came home with a huge suitcase!), it showed me that I need less than I think.

Toys. We think the more toys we have, the more busy our children will be. Instead, the more toys, the more mess! The more toys the less time we have, because we are so busy trying to keep up with all the mess. I have cut down on the amount of toys we have and tried to stop buying so many toys. Because our kids really do not need or miss them. The less toys, the more creative they get and the less tidying they have to do. I was looking after children in our church's creche recently. A tub of toys had just been tidied up and put on the shelf. I watched as a little boy reached up and pulled them back down. He took off the lid, dumped them all over the ground and walked away. He never even played with them! I don't know what fun kids get from dumping toys, but they seem to have more fun dumping them than playing with them!

Linen. I donated about half of our towels, teatowels, and facecloths. I haven't missed them because we didn't need them all. But I love having cupboards that aren't overflowing.

If your house makes you feel overwhelmed as mine did, try having less. Ask yourself, how much do I actually need? If you're afraid you'll need things, just put them in a place out of sight and give it some time. If you don't have to pull them back out, you know you'll be safe! You will be surprised at how much you don't miss or need. You will also find that you have less stress and mess!

For more encouraging content related to teen girls and busy moms visit and Used with permission.

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