While taking a walk to the beach with my husband recently, we passed a quaint house right across from the ocean with a big sign in the front of it:

“Estate Sale Here

Since I had never been to an estate sale, out of curiosity, we wandered inside. The rooms were packed with people rummaging through all the belongings of the elderly couple who had resided there before their recent deaths.

It was an eerie feeling to see all the “stuff” that they had accumulated over the years being rifled through by bargain hunters ecstatic about getting an entire set of Waterford china serving six for a mere $50.

A wave of sadness and a reminder of a sobering reality flooded me as I noticed the irony of the situation.

Their house and every one of their belongings were there, now a pile of mere material things—just “stuff” being sold to others.

While I am confident they enjoyed their “stuff”, it made me think about how much time and effort we spend accumulating “stuff”.

How much of it do we really need?

How much of our time do we spend doing things that will just allow us to get more and bigger “stuff”?

What I carried away from the estate sale was not anything material, but just a stark reminder.

A reminder that the “stuff” we spend so much time accumulating stays behind when we are gone.

Perhaps it is a call  to take an inventory our lives and determine where we need to simplify.

What is the real cost of the things we keep accumulating more and more of?

What of all this “stuff” do we really need?

What can we let go of and simplify to allow more time for activities that bring us joy?

Let this week’s post serve as a cause for pause with this question:

“Are you spending your precious time and energy accumulating material “stuff”, or building the estate that can’t be sold when you are gone?”