“Dad, you HAVE to see this place,” my 11-year-old daughter insisted upon returning from an open house viewing with our neighbor – something they (her and her sister) do for fun on Sundays. The house was HUGE, even by LA celebrity standards. And, it had just been remodeled. My kids’ eyes bulged bigger as they moved from room to room imagining the world of “Bennifer” and “Brangelina.” (They may also have been thinking, “Our parents are deadbeats.”)
The house was breathtaking! So much space seemed perfect for a family … wanting to spend time apart. The kids, though, saw it as the land of unicorns and rainbows. You know, heaven!
I certainly didn’t want to be Dreamkiller Dad.
I thought it might be a good idea (hopefully not in a George Costanza sort of way) to help reframe their castle-in-the-sky plans. With the world’s screaming that money, stuff, and status are “the bomb,” my wife and I want our kids to focus on what’s most meaningful …
So I showed them Graham Hill’s “Less stuff, more happiness” TED Talk.
Did you watch the video? It’s only 6 minutes!
Hill succinctly describes an alternate universe of reasonably sized domiciles designed to accommodate one’s needs and reasonable wants.
He begins and ends his talk atop a box of stuff.
We never learn what’s in the box.
It doesn’t matter.