Goodbye, Things Book Summary

goodbye-things

Goodbye, Things by Fumio Sasaki

My Thoughts

Inspiring book on the author’s personal minimalism journey. Contains practical advice for how-to declutter and discard, plus thoughts to challenge ones mindset about possessions. Makes a good compliment to The Life Changing Magic of Tidying Up by Marie Kondo.

My Favorite Quotes

  • There are limits to the capacity of your brain, your energy and your time.
  • There isn’t a single item you will regret throwing away.
  • Let go of the idea of “some day.”
  • Fewer things does not mean less satisfaction.
  • Discard it if you’ve thought about doing so five times.
  • Minimalism is not a competition, don’t boast about how little you have, don’t judge someone who has more than you.

Best Questions

  • If you lost it, would you buy it again?
  • What if you started from scratch?
  • Why can’t I part with my things?
  • What would the person who passed away have wanted?

55 tips to help you say goodbye to your things

  1. Discard the preconception that you can’t discard your things.
  2. Discarding something takes skill.
  3. When you discard something, you gain more than you lose.
  4. Ask yourself why you can’t part with your things.
  5. Minimizing is difficult, but it is not impossible.
  6. There are limits to the capacity of your brain, your energy and your time.
  7. Discard something right now.
  8. There isn’t a single item you will regret throwing away.
  9. Start with things that are clearly junk.
  10. Minimize anything you have in multiples.
  11. Get rid of it if you haven’t used it in a year.
  12. Discard it if you have it for the sake of appearance.
  13. Differentiate between things you want and things you need.
  14. Take photos of the items that are tough to part with.
  15. It’s easier to revisit your memories once you go digital.
  16. Our things are like roommates, except we pay their rent.
  17. Organizing is not minimizing.
  18. Tackle the nest (storage) before the pest (clutter).
  19. Leave your unused space empty.
  20. Let go of the idea of “some day.”
  21. Say goodbye to who you used to be.
  22. Discard the things you have already forgotten about.
  23. Don’t get creative when you’re trying to discard things.
  24. Let go of the idea of getting your money’s worth.
  25. There is no need to stock up.
  26. Feeling the spark of joy will help you focus.
  27. Auction services are a quick way to part with your possessions.
  28. Use auctions to take one last look at your things.
  29. Use a pick up service to get rid of your possessions.
  30. Don’t get hung up on the prices that you initially paid.
  31. Think of stores as your personal warehouses.
  32. The city is our personal floor plan.
  33. Discard any possessions that you can’t discuss with passion.
  34. If you lost it, would you buy it again?
  35. If you can’t remember how many presents you’ve given, don’t worry about the gifts you’ve gotten.
  36. Try to imagine what the person who passed away would have wanted.
  37. Discarding memorabilia is not the same as discarding memories.
  38. Our biggest items trigger chain reactions.
  39. Our homes aren’t museums, they don’t need collections.
  40. Be social, be a borrower.
  41. Rent what can be rented.
  42. Social media can boost your minimizing motivation.
  43. What if you started from scratch?
  44. Say “see you later” before you say goodbye.
  45. Discard anything that creates visual noise.
  46. One in, one out.
  47. Avoid the concord fallacy.
  48. Be quick to admit mistakes, they help you grow.
  49. Think of buying as renting.
  50. Don’t buy it because it’s cheap, don’t take it because it’s free.
  51. If it’s not a “hell yes!” it’s a no.
  52. The things we really need will always find their way back to us.
  53. Keep the gratitude.
  54. Discarding things can be wasteful, but the guilt that keeps you from minimizing is the true waste.
  55. The things we say goodbye to are the things we’ll remember forever.

Recap: 15 more tips for the next stage of your minimalist journey

  1. Fewer things does not mean less satisfaction.
  2. Find your unique uniform.
  3. We find our originality when we own less.
  4. Discard it if you’ve thought about doing so five times.
  5. If you’ve developed your minimalist skills you can skip the “see you later” stage.
  6. A little inconvenience can make us happier.
  7. Discard it even if it sparks joy.
  8. Minimalism is freedom, the sooner you experience it the better.
  9. Discarding things may leave you with less, but it will never make you a lesser person.
  10. Question the conventional ways you are expected to use things.
  11. Don’t think; discard.
  12. Minimalism is not a competition, don’t boast about how little you have, don’t judge someone who has more than you.
  13. The desire to discard and the desire to possess are flip slides of the same coin.
  14. Find your own minimalism.
  15. Minimalism is a method and a beginning.

My Action Steps After Reading

  • Continued discarding and growing in my minimalist journey
  • Improved my mindset and refined my mental model of discarding and organizing
  • Tackled several “nests” (storage) and discarded them before the “pests” (clutter), see #18 above

Related Book Summaries

Hope you enjoyed this and got value from my notes.
This is the 20th book read in my 2018 reading list.
Here is a list of all my book summaries.

2 thoughts on “Goodbye, Things Book Summary

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