This past year, my husband and I moved to a smaller home. We left our six-bedroom home of 18 years and moved to one-story living. The fact that I have helped clients do this for 11 years did not mean that we would be able to do it easily.
We approached our downsizing as a business venture; our house was our largest single asset, and we wanted to realize the most from its sale. As we de-cluttered room after room, we were astonished at how easily we separated what was really important to us from the myriad items we had simply accumulated over the years. What surprised us most was how liberating it felt to have fewer things.
My husband and I didn’t realize it at the time, but what we were doing is “rightsizing,” so it was ironic when last fall I was contacted by Ciji Ware, who was conducting research for her book, Rightsizing: Simplifying Your Surroundings While Keeping What Matters Most. Ciji contacted me as President of the National Association of Senior Move Managers (NASMM). That I was in the midst of a personal rightsizing experience was serendipitous, but it made all the difference.
I have never been a “less is more” person, but I am now. What I realized, both personally and through Ciji’s book, is that downsizing does not need to be a mournful process. Since that time, I have thought about what would if happen if we could help our clients and their family members re-envision downsizing as an opportunity instead of a mournful experience, that paring down, like the move to a senior living community itself, can mean new possibilities.
What a gift we would be giving them and ourselves.
Margit Novack is the Founding President of the National Association of Senior Move Managers (NASMM). She can be reached via email at firstname.lastname@example.org or by phone at (610) 853-4300. See www.movingsolutions.com for more information.