How much is enough?

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How much is enough?

As a professional organizer, while guiding your clients through the decision-making process, you may be asked, “How much is enough?” After giving this question a great deal of thought, Liana George of By George Organizing Solutions offered to share her answer, and invites you to share yours as well.


When I work with clients, I’m often asked the question, “How much is enough?”  Although it may seem like a relatively easy question to answer, I find it more and more difficult to answer these days.

We live in a society where we measure our lives by how much we own.  Television commercials entice us to buy more, have more, want more.  We are made to feel as if happiness and the meaning of life can be found in all the stuff we possess.  So we buy and acquire more, hoping that we will find our joy and purpose in life by having large quantities of stuff.  Until we discover that it leaves us empty and longing for something else.

Many people who travel down this road find that too much stuff eventually overwhelms them to the point of misery.  It’s then that they begin to question, how much is enough?  That’s when they call me, hoping I can give them a concrete answer and the happiness that has eluded them.

Sadly, I can’t give them a solid answer.  It’s not because I don’t know, but rather it’s because I’ve come to realize that “enough” looks different for every person.  For some people, 10 shirts may be enough, but for others 20 is enough.  A person who has 4 pairs of jeans may think that is plenty, while another person may feel that 8 pairs of jeans is sufficient.  Who’s to say who’s right and who’s wrong?

The problem is that we are trying to quantify “enough” and the truth is we can’t.  There is no way to put a number on how much is enough and make it the standard by which we should all live by.  It’s not possible and it’s not reality.

So how do you answer the question?

I’ve given a lot of thought on how to answer this question and here’s what I’ve come up with ~

How much is enough?

Enough is ….

… manageable on a daily basis.
… not overwhelming or stressful when you need to use it, access it, or store it.
… contentment and satisfaction when you look at it.
… letting go of some of it and being content with what’s left.
… not overflowing from its designated space or requiring more space than you may have.
… used on a regular basis and not collecting dust.
… however much is necessary for you to be happy, comfortable, and able to thrive in life.

As much as we would like, there is no formula or definitive number to quantify “enough”.  We can, however, understand what enough looks like so that we are able to determine how much is enough for each of us, and live knowing that just because the number of our days are measured, doesn’t mean our lives have to be.

How do you define, or answer the question, “How much is enough?” Is your answer similar to mine, or would you change/add something to it? I’d love to hear your thoughts ~ please leave a comment and let me know!

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Liana George is a wife, mother, professional organizer, and owner of By George Organizing Solutions. After 18 years as a stay-at-home mom, she decided to combine her love of teaching, organizing, and serving into a business, and says it has been one of her best decisions yet!  In addition to offering families and individuals one-on-one help with their home organizing needs, Liana also enjoys writing , blogging, and speaking on a variety of organizing topics.  She knows that not everyone may be as passionate about organizing as she is, but believes that everyone can be organized. Her goal is to help others transform their chaos into lasting order.

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  1. Avatar Ardene on January 12, 2015 at 7:02 pm

    Thanks for this post, it’s a breath of fresh air. I love your input on how you do not set parameters other than to say if you can live with it comfortably and it brings joy daily, then it’s a good fit. Other than the once a year special items, and even those might not be so useful, depending, I agree fully with all you’ve said. I’m so relieved to not hear the usual gamut of theories and techniques. This is a more open ended approach and it’s inspiring. Thank you.

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