Hitting the road and shedding the unessential

“Goin’ places that I’ve never been…Seein’ things that I may never see again.”

Yes, we’re on the road again.

It’s been a fun month here on the beach in Folly Beach, SC, celebrating Julie’s birthday, Christmas, and New Year’s. Seeing friends. Enjoying the sounds of the Atlantic Ocean off our front porch.

But, alas, our freedom adventure beckons us back to the mountains. And so as I write this, I’m sipping my coffee, getting ready to hop in the car for a drive to Ellijay, Georgia.

This is now month five of our freedom travel adventure. If you haven’t been following along, we decided to sell our home and most of our possessions and take our four kids on the road.

For how long? Who knows?

We’ve spent time in Blue Ridge, GA, with family in Illinois, a month in the hills of southeast Tennessee, and December on the shore here in South Carolina.

After Ellijay, we’re off to the Gulf Coast of Texas, and then northwest through desert and mountains.

When we embarked on the trip back in September, we packed our remaining “non-travel” possessions into a small, 5×5 storage facility. Our “travel” possessions packed our mini-van and my Mini Cooper.

During the past four months, however, we’ve learned what we need and what we don’t need.

We’ve realized what we actually use, and what is excess.

So at each stop, we’ve shed stuff. Sometimes clothes. Sometimes toys. Sometimes mugs and plates and glasses and other stuff we’re simply not using.

One of my favorite quotes is from Bruce Lee who, when asked his secret to success, said:

“It is not daily increase but daily decrease, hack away the unessential. The closer to the source, the less wastage there is.”

It’s so common for us, as humans, to continue to add to our daily lives. We want more. More stuff. More money. More activities. More goals.

A few days ago, on New Year’s Day, perhaps even you set some “resolutions” to add even more into your year.

What if, instead of continuing to add stuff to our lives — we subtracted?

What if we “hacked away” at the unessential?

Every time my family sheds some unessential things that we learn we don’t use or need, our load is lighter. It’s more comfortable to travel. It takes less time to pack the car. And we get closer to the source of what truly makes us happy — which isn’t unessential stuff.

At the end of two months in Ellijay, I’m sure we’ll discard even more stuff. And our load will get even lighter. We plan on discarding our vehicles this summer and consolidating to one automobile.

How can you look at subtracting the unessential to your life?

How can you simplify in 2021 so that you’re lighter and faster?

How can you hack away at all the things that are complicating your life, keeping you from moving forward, and get closer to the source of what actually fulfills you?

These are the questions I’m pondering in the early days of the year, and I invite you to do the same.

By the way, if you’d like to join a community of individuals looking to discard the unessential and build lives of freedom and fulfillment, please check out our Freedom Inner Circle.

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