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Joshua Fields Millburn & Ryan Nicodemus help over 20 million people live meaningful lives with less through their website, books, podcast, and documentary. The Minimalists have been featured in the New York Times, Wall Street Journal, Boston Globe, Forbes, TIME, ABC, CBS, NBC, BBC, CBC, and NPR.

Diminishing Value

These eclipse glasses are worth much less than they were a week ago. So, like a gallon of milk that has gone bad, I have no problem letting them go.

Most material possessions, however, don’t have an obvious expiration date, so we hold on to them—storing them in our drawers, boxes, bins, closets, basements, attics, garages, storage lockers—just in case we might “need” them someday in a hypothetical future.

But as each day passes, our hoard holds less and less worth until eventually our possessions are worth less than nothing—worthless because clinging is expensive.

Less worth.
Worth less.
Worthless.

The lesson we learn, then, from our spoiled milk and eclipse glasses, is the same lesson we can apply to all of our things: the stuff that once added value to our lives may not always add value, so we must be willing to let go.