I’m in a moment of narrowing down. Digging into what works. Shedding what doesn’t. Searching for the little perfect nuggets: Hitting a groove with my kids. Focusing on work that matters. Opening myself up to a big love. That all comes out here in my writing, and also what I write for other places.
I’ve been on a roll writing about how much I love living with as little clutter as possible — this is somewhat about financial thriftiness, but even more about being conscious about my environs. Low-clutter living clears space for emotional and spiritual wellness. Creativity is granted a place to thrive. If my rooms and cupboards are full of junk, my mind is full of junk. (Check out my recent post “I’m feng shui-ing the shit out of my apartment but my divorce is getting in the way”).
A roundup of some of my recent stories I wrote for clients about the power of simple living:
Why I Love My Cupboards (Almost) Bare DailyWorth
I get a big kick out of opening the refrigerator door and seeing not much more than a half-stick of butter, an apple and an almost-gone gallon of milk.
Yes, it can be comforting to have a refrigerator stocked with fresh produce, an assortment of dairy products and the meat and seafood I love to roast and sear. But having a full fridge also casts a shadow on my life. Each time I go for a yogurt or grab some grapes, I see hundreds of dollars’ worth of perishable goods which—” should they go to waste—” will cost me guilt in addition to the money I’ve already spent on the food. A refrigerator, or house, full of unused stuff is akin to a business with inventory collecting dust. Both represent money poorly spent.
Feng Shui Changed My Life: How three hours with an expert gave me everything I wanted The Real Deal by RetailMeNot
Nothing was really wrong in my life, yet nothing was quite right. All kinds of exciting professional opportunities kept knocking on my door but then would fall apart for various reasons out of my control. Money was getting tight, but I was getting by. I kept going out with really great guys, but not one of them was quite right for the long term. My kids were thriving, but it seemed as if we were disconnected in ways I couldn’t identify.
At a friend’s recommendation, I called his feng shui consultant. I’m pretty open to most things metaphysical. I don’t practice anything other than my own blasé brand of private spirituality, but I listen to the coincidences around me and accept that there are forces in the world greater than my human pea brain can comprehend. And if someone can help me lasso these forces to my benefit, I was more than happy to pay $360 for a consultation.
Downsize to Happiness: 3 true stories of women who found that less is more The Real Deal by RetailMeNot
Less is more. That’s the theme of these women’s lives—women who at one point had too much stuff and too much space. These things brought them stress, so they turned it around. Read what these women threw out, and how it changed their lives forever.
Personal Shoppers on a Budget: They can revolutionize your closet — and your budget The Real Deal by RetailMeNot
Experts say that a personal shopper—also called a stylist—can help most women save money on their wardrobes. “Studies show that women wear 20 percent of their clothes 80 percent of the time,” says Thea Wood, a Texas-based stylist and image consultant who also works as style editor for AICI Global Magazine. “We try to help them reverse that.” Think about how much you may spend on a special cocktail dress that you wear once or twice versus a pair of jeans that you wear five times per week. “The goal is to lower the cost per wear of each garment,” Wood says. “A stylist will help you get more value out of what you own.”
Emma Johnson is a veteran money journalist, noted blogger, bestselling author and an host of the award-winning podcast, Like a Mother with Emma Johnson. A former Associated Press Financial Wire reporter and MSN Money columnist, Emma has written for the New York Times, Wall Street Journal, Forbes, Glamour, Oprah.com, U.S. News, Parenting, USA Today and others. Her #1 bestseller, The Kickass Single Mom (Penguin), was named to the New York Post’s ‘Must Read” list.
Emma regularly comments on issues of modern families, gender equality, divorce, sex and motherhood for outlets like CNN, Headline News, New York Times, Wall Street Journal, Fox & Friends, CNBC, NPR, TIME, MONEY, O, The Oprah Magazine and The Doctors. She was named Parents magazine’s “Best of the Web,” “Top 15 Personal Finance Podcasts” by U.S. News, and a “Most Eligible New Yorker” by New York Observer.
A popular speaker, Emma presented at the United Nations Summit for Gender Equality. Read more about Emma here.