On Labels and Letting Go

Posted by on Sep 10, 2014 in Breathe, Recent Posts | 9 comments

On Labels and Letting Go

There’s a time for everything. This time has been about learning to live in 168 sq. ft. with my family of four. Three and a half years later, I can tell you that it is possible. I can also tell you that it is sometimes harder than you imagine. I can also tell you that there are times when the thought of not living tiny scares me.

I wonder if I’ll see the kids anymore. Will they get lost in their bedrooms? I wonder if I’ll sequester myself in my office or in my super-deep bathtub. I wonder if I’ll have to demand that the kids pile on top of me on the couch the way they do now. I wonder how our lives will change.

Hari Playing Dress Up

It’s easy to become comfortable in life the way we know it. Even if it’s part of the plan, looking at moving on can be scary. If I’m not a tiny house dweller anymore, what am I?

It came to me during my day of silence as I canned dilly beans this week. You’ve let so much go, and in the letting go, you’ve attached to a label. It’s time to let that go, too.

Because of my self-chosen label, tiny house dweller, I’ve found myself judging our decision to build this bigger house, like somehow I won’t exist anymore if I’m not a tiny house dweller. Of course I know this isn’t true, and I know I will enjoy the new experience of ample space for my family. It just makes me think about how closely we humans identify with our labels.

How ‘bout we all play dress up with labels? As we move through life, we try them on, and when they don’t fit anymore, we throw them into a big pile in the woods. They’ll be there if we need them again, and in the meantime, they make a mighty beautiful pile.

Maybe this dress-up playing will help us to take life’s transitions a little lighter and trust that we still exist even if we aren’t exactly what we thought we were. Care to join me?

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  1. We all have labels attached to us, trying to keep them from sticking too securely is definitely a hard task. Changing and evolving is what life is all about. Keep the faith and stay the special person that you are, that is one label you should keep.

    • Hi Teresa! Thanks for reading and leaving such a nice comment. I hope you are well!

  2. Beautiful post! I’ve often felt this way…that I’ve actually become my label. It’s surely a hard thing to change. I’m so glad that I stumbled on your blog. Wonderful thing to think about over morning coffee 🙂

    • Coffee Cheers, Hannah! Little known fact: Hannah is my birth name. Thanks for visiting and come back now and then!

  3. I can totally relate to your sentiment in this post. We lived, as a family, in a tiny house for 6 months. When I got remarried, we moved into a much bigger house. I spent time considering who I was apart from living tiny. I had spent south time preparing mentally, emotionally, and retraining myself to reconsider my personal possessions. But, I have learned it is possible to live tiny, even in a big space! I wish your family the best of luck as you move onto this new phase of your lives. Blessings,

    • Hi Alysha!
      I’m so glad to see you here. I read your story when you first moved into your house and I was very touched to see how you responded to your husband’s death. It’s nice to know you’ve found love again.

      I really appreciate your insight into the transition from tiny to a larger space. We plan to keep this tiny lifestyle in our big house, and it’s nice to know you’ve done that, too.

  4. Great post Hari – it’s definitely all about mindset and philosophy rather than assigning yourself a label and keeping to it stoically for the rest of your life. Labels are sticky – but in time they lose their glue and fall off 🙂 X

  5. Life is about change. We are always (should always) be evolving and learning, so I feel the labels we use to define who we are must evolve and change as well. Good luck to you!

  6. Thank you for sharing this. So often I try to live up to what I’ve labeled myself instead of sitting down and thinking about what my family and I really need at the moment. Best wishes with your new adventures!