Sure, I’m a minimalist. That doesn’t mean it’s easy though. Letting go and getting over things can be difficult, especially when you are stubborn or are trying to undo years of opposite thinking.
This may sound stupid and silly and pointless to start. And maybe it will to finish as well. But I’m okay with that.
I’ve got this shiny new gadget. It wasn’t bought because it was a shiny new gadget, but because the very young “old” gadget that I replaced stopped working properly after eight months. I decided that I would never compromise on the quality of my cell phone again.
I’m not a huge lover of owning a cell phone. I do like some of the things that they can do, but I also fantasize at the thought of life before and without cell phones. Most of human existence did not include carrying these electronics around with us, but you’d never know it.
In any event, said shiny new gadget arrived pristine. Just gorgeous. My Nexus 6P, housed in its aluminum body, looked just fantastic. I’d admire its outer body every so often, making sure I kept it in “perfect” shape. And then the inevitable. A random scratch on the casing.
Enter letting go and getting over it.
I know better than this. I know it’s just a phone. Why then am I focusing on this imperfection? And now there’s a second, a third? Where are these coming from? I don’t rough house the phone. Nor do I remember doing anything that would have led to this. I couldn’t possibly have…
Right. It’s just a phone.
In Richard Carlson’s book Don’t Sweat The Small Stuff… and it’s all small stuff, we are provided with some perfectly good advice for these very instances. We should see the thing, and everything, as already broken.
That’s correct. One day my (once) expensive and shiny phone will be in a landfill. I’ll be on to the next phone, with my current phone resting in peace. It was a wonderful device really…
Why should I obsess about this today? What am I saving it for? I’ve already learned to use my phones “naked”. I paid for a functional phone. Now, if it happens to have a good feel (the way these phones are designed), and looks nice (again, design and not the primary reason for purchase), why put a fifty dollar brick case on it? Because I need it waterproof? Because if I decide to throw it off Mount Everest it might not break?
It’s my phone. I paid for it. Paid for it to replace the one that stunk. To use it. Use it I shall.
I, and I joke not, searched Google for “Getting over phone scratches”. The results made me laugh. Was I obsessive compulsive? Maybe a little. Does it ruin my day, certainly not. Do I think about it from time to time, yes. I don’t like labels anyways. I did, however, enjoy the advice that several people offered.
“Take a big rock and scratch the back of the phone. After say, ‘There, no need to worry about that.'” And then there was the guy who got a brand new motorcycle. While showing it off, he picked up a heap of rocks and dirt and threw it at the gas tank, scuffing it up a bit. “There we go, got that out-of-the-way.”
How do those people do it? I admire them. I know that things are just things, but I couldn’t imagine doing this intentionally. Maybe I should. Perhaps it would help. I’m going to go work on that. Every time I get a new thing, maybe I’ll personalize it a little. That should help with letting go.