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Book Reviews

The book I finished this week was entitled "The Year of Less" by Cait Flanders. It is a self-help book that highlights the author's decision to go on a year-long shopping ban. During this time she chose to refrain from purchasing any new items unless she needed to replace them. There were a few exceptions to the rule such as: groceries, toiletries, cleaning supplies, a few essential clothing items and gifts. During this time, she also chose not allow herself to purchase take-out coffee (yes, my friends, no Starbucks!) As she was implementing her shopping ban she also decided to declutter her life by getting rid of 70% of her personal belongings! On this journey, she found that there were other areas in her life that needed to be reassessed. Negative habits had formed in her life that were not brought to her attention until she had started eliminating the excess. From a counselor's perspective, I feel that as human beings we surround ourselves with lots of distractions, some of those being possessions, that we use to distract us from what is really the problem. When we lighten our load, as Cait Flanders did, we are able to face those issues head on and move forward.

I found the commitment of the author to be very inspiring. I often ask myself "Why do I need all of this stuff?!" as I look at my overstuffed dresser and closets. Bringing a load of items that I no longer need to the Salvation Army gives me great joy. Making room in my closet is cleansing. The only obstacle in this process is the 5 other individuals that live in my home. One person's cleansing can only go so far when the rest of her family is not "all in." I wonder if there is a family version of this book:)

Rating: 4/5 BOOKMARKS

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