How I Lost 580 Pounds This Summer

I love this post on Simplicity from Robynn! Enjoy and be challenged!

I’m always intrigued by the glossy magazine covers that claim with great enthusiasm that I can lose 25 pounds in 5 weeks. Even more perplexing are the ones that insist I can do that while eating cake and ice cream. I have struggled with my weight since I left Pakistan, 25 years ago arrived in Canada’s cafeteria and discovered that at least the food was comforting. During my first two years of reentry into my passport country I gained 60 pounds.

But this summer I finally discovered how to lose weight! And I’ve lost over 580 pounds!

This summer I rediscovered the joys of the spiritual habit of simplicity and I’ve gotten rid of over 580 pounds of stuff. I feel lighter, and freer. I’m experiencing more joy, less stress. I’m less weighed down. Less encumbered.


It’s hard to describe how this works but somehow our souls are often tied to our stuff. Stuff bogs us down and trips us up. Our clutter, knick-knacks, tchotchkes, Precious Moment’s figurines have a way of moving off the shelves, off the end tables, off the desk and into our spirits. It takes over. Stuff, like a first-born, has power and takes charge. She starts dictating how I spend my day. She breaks and demands attention. She whines and I take notice. I find myself coddling her, moving her around, moving her over to make room for more.

And all the while my soul is deadened and darkened and dulled.

For me sin in spiraling circles hides in the shadows of stuff. I want more. I get greedy. I need a bigger house. I feel sorry for myself. I only have a few. I judge those with more. I deserve a bigger collection. I am jealous of those who have more. I feel angry at God for holding out on me. I regret not having more money to buy what I need to make my collection complete. I wish I had more money to buy the house to house what I have and what I still need to get. I demand. I plead. I whine. Lust for stuff steals my limited joy. My satisfaction is eroded. Suddenly I’m absorbed in me.

Stopping it is so sweetly simple and yet is met with unimaginable resistance. Just stop. Purge. Give away. Less really is more and you’ll know it right away. Stuff sets traps. Lightening our load sidesteps those same traps.

We begin to live with No Thanks, and I’m Fine Thank You and I Don’t Need It. Contentment and satisfaction move in swiftly.

And that’s how I lost so much weight. We got rid of some bunk beds, a dresser, a desk, stacks of books, piles of clothes. Two garbage bags of stuffed animals joined the exodus. A coffee pot I no longer use, a stack of plates, some glasses, a couple of tea cups all went down to the Goodwill. The kids have joined the fun. They’ve gone through their drawers too. They have eliminated things they no longer love, clothes they no longer wear!

This is a weight loss program that really works…!

I have less baggage. And as a pilgrim just passing through that feels simply divine!