Simplifying My Life

Written by Wally Amos

I am going through the process of cleaning out a bunch of stuff at my house.  I look forward to being free of all these possessions that I no longer need or have room to keep.  And in the big picture, I recognize that simplifying my life is nearly always a positive experience.  So, I am forging ahead with a pickup truck, a couple of strong friends and the map to the city dump.

            In my days as a talent agent, I got to know a lot of performers.  Tina Turner is a powerful force not only in music but also in life.  She and I have shared some similar experiences; she also had to go to court to fight for the right to retain her own name in business.  Tina has a wonderful way to explain how she got through that time: 

            “Sometimes you’ve got to let everything go – purge yourself.  If you are unhappy with anything . . . whatever is bringing you down,  GET RID OF IT.  Because you’ll find that when you’re free, your true creativity, your true self comes out.

            Sometimes we not only need to rid ourselves of our junk, we need to say goodbye to the old stuff and celebrate simplifying our lives – looking forward to whatever adventure lies ahead that will fill the empty space. 

            American philosopher and teacher Joseph Campbell may have said it best:  “We must be willing to get rid of the life we’ve planned, so as to have the life that is waiting for us.  The old skin has to be shed before the new one can come.” 

            Do you sometimes have a difficult time letting go of old stuff that has piled up?  Do you know down deep inside that you’re never really going to fix that old appliance?  Glue together that sugar bowl?  Re-use that Styrofoam packing material?



  1. Missy Blackman   |  Thursday, 10 March 2011 at 1:59 am

    I know that I have a terrible time throwing anything away. I always think that maybe I’ll need it someday, and sometimes I do. When that happens, it sort of reinforces my fear that I should never throw anything away. I think that this occasionally bleeds into my head, too. I have a hard time letting go of pain that someone has inflicted on me. I know that I ought to just lay it down, like you always say, Wally. But it’s harder than it seems.

  2. Douglas "Kalani" Akiu   |  Friday, 11 March 2011 at 3:27 am

    Once you get rid of the things you no longer need; you can focus on the things that are truly important. We have all that we need; forget things and invest in people. Live love and build relationships.

    God bless and live a simple; uncomplicated loving life…

  3. Maggie Pope   |  Friday, 25 March 2011 at 9:25 am

    I have so much stuff around my house that I don’t really even want. Maybe you could bring your guys over to my place and take my things to the dump too. I believe that it is much easier to clean out someone elses junk than it is to clean out our own. We have nothing invested in other people’s stuff. My friends and I sometimes joke that we should just trade lives for a couple of weeks. Because I know exactly what is wrong with her life and she says she knows exactly what is wrong in my life. We could just fix each other’s lives and throw out all the parts that aren’t working. It’s so much easier when you have nothing invested in it, don’t you think? A very interesting article. Thanks.

  4. Ronald Corfus   |  Saturday, 26 March 2011 at 2:44 pm

    A very nice article, Wally. I like the posts that talk about what is going on in your real life as opposed to just general philosophies. This one particularly hit home. I know that I have too much trash in my life. But some of it is of the human variety.

    Ridding ourselves of the trash in our garages is the easy part. Ridding ourselves of the people who trash up our positive energy is much harder. There is the guilt involved, i.e. why do I seem to attract all of these high-maintainence people. And there is the fear that if I rid myself of these bums, maybe there won’t be anybody left in my life. How do you rid yourself of people who are negative and needy? Any answers out there?

  5. MsConfident   |  Sunday, 27 March 2011 at 2:03 pm

    I enjoyed reading this and I am happy to find out I am not the only one having a difficult time getting rid of things which I may “still” need some time.
    I have to clean out my house for an upcoming move this summer with my 3 teenage sons and so far I have been putting it off because I can’t decide what to keep or what to throw out.
    After reading this I do believe getting rid of things will simplify my life as well as to give me a new start for the next chapter in my life.
    Thank you Wally Amos and Douglas “Kalani” Akiu for the wonderful info!

  6. Beverly   |  Wednesday, 30 March 2011 at 5:19 am

    Wally, I am so glad that you talked about Tina Turner. Not only is she an amazing performer, but she is a very strong woman. She survived an abusive relationship and had to fight to get the right to perform under her own name. I had not thought about the connection that the two of you have until you wrote about it here. But it makes perfect sense. You had to go to court to regain the right to your own name also. Thank you for all the things you had to say here. You are such a smart man, Wally Amos!

  7. B.Carroll   |  Monday, 04 April 2011 at 8:40 am

    Well I’m about to get simplified REAL soon.
    My unemployment benefits are coming to an end
    I am now in Bankruptcy.
    And the only thing delaying the foreclosure is the bankruptcy, when that’s final I’m sure I’ll be outta here….Jeez. (I’ve lived in the same house for 28 years)

    What number of unemployed people do we have to reach for our Government to do something?
    I forecast TENT CITY or a SKID ROW in every town.

    A heck of a way to simplify our lives. Take our stuff and put it out on the curb in garbage bags.

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