Its interesting that we feel that if we had more space to live in, it would be better for us. Our homes have gotten progressively bigger over the last 50 years and our families smaller, and people still call out for more space. More bedrooms, more bathrooms, bigger closets, and a finished basement. Families do not even live during the day in these bigger homes – kids are at school and activities, and both parents often work outside of the home. So what is the point of having more space?
We all survived living in small children’s bedrooms, sometimes shared with a sibling, or the college dorm room. That small space encouraged us to get out because it felt so confining. We had to be among other people and talk and find commonalities, and we did things together, event if it was only sitting in the grass watching other people go by.
Now we live in these bigger homes with Pottery Barn-like furniture organizing our stuff. Our children are rarely out because their home is filled with enough toys and games to keep them occupied for months. When I was child, we were outside all day, practically living out on the streets, coming home only for meals and nightfall.
More space to live in didn’t make things better, just very different. A big house filled with things won’t bring cherished memories to adults in 50 years. Will children remember the perfectly organized toys? Or that time they colored on the walls? Will they talk about that sofa when they have their own children? Or will they share stories about their special climbing tree?
The spell of “more is better” just winds around us and pulls us along. When we have “more” we fill it, and we don’t need to be creative with what we have. We don’t have to make choices and accept what is and just be happy. We get yanked by “more” and it is ultimately unsatisfying and brings us frustration. Breaking the powerful spell of “more” is tough.