Downsized and Redeployed

Posted April 4th, 2009 by Kevin Rose and filed in Issue 2: Downsizing

Gypsy Rides! It was during the later 1990’s when I remember seeing the shelves of local bookstores begin to fill up with books on voluntary simplicity. At the time, I was too busy raising my two young sons to pay much attention to the contemporary writing on the topic, but I was aware of the fact that my own life was not getting any simpler. I didn’t buy the books and I didn’t simplify my life in the “10 Easy Steps” prescribed by countless authors on the topic. My experience with “downsizing” was much more expedient – and much more familiar to many Americans than the courses of action outlined in the self-help literature. It went something like this.

“A few months ago I warned you that my key performance measures indicate your failure to step up to the plate and think outside the box. I asked you to drink from the fire hose, start leveraging your core competencies, and get on the same page with the paradigm shift that you’ve thus far failed to recognize in this marriage.

“In response to your poor performance,  I’ve stepped up my own customer relationship marketing efforts. The feedback from brain dumps with my colleagues has resulted in a decision to redeploy you in favor of a new, highly scalable enterprise solution. Trust me. What I’m talking about is a win-win, organically derived value proposition.

“As of today, your role in this marriage has been outsourced.  No need to circle back to me on this one. We’re taking the conversation offline for good. You’ve been downsized. Got it?”

Okay, so I’m paraphrasing a bit, but my former business/marriage partner has a penchant for the corporate-speak buzzword mumbo jumbo that makes me cringe. Whatever the exact words were, I was given the matrimonial pink slip.

I’ve since done a bit of research on the prescribed techniques for simplifying one’s life. A quick review of the index in “The Simple Living Guide” yields results for “dating” and “romance,” but I couldn’t find a chapter on “divorce”. Post-marital acrimony may not be good subject matter for selling books on how to achieve the joys of a simple life, but I’m living proof that it’s a highly effective method for shedding a few pounds. After handing over the balance of my bank accounts to a lawyer, I found myself nearly broke and very much homeless. Life immediately became simplified (in the material sense). All it took was the stroke of a judge’s pen.

After the edict was issued from management (family court), I packed my personal belongings in a cardboard box and made my way to the front door – “redeployment” complete and ready for the next adventure.

To read more of Kevin’s small home adventures, visit his blog, “Building Gypsy Rose .”

2 Responses to “Downsized and Redeployed”

  1. betsyNo Gravatar says:

    although its sometimes hard to end a marriage or long time relationship, it seems that the judge made one thing easy for you: it sounds like you didn’t have much uncluttering to do! there are many times i wish i could pack everything i own in a cardboard box or 2, but i am working on it! i love your site and everything you are sharing here and there. from what i have read and from what it looks like you have gained from it all…the judge also handed you a chance for the finer things in life…the ones that count :)

  2. AmyNo Gravatar says:

    The same thing happened to me, only I was the one who got left with all the stuff. I also had to sell the big house within a certain time period or lose my share of the equity. At the time of the divorce I didn’t even have a job, much less a plan! I ended up downsizing by selling 80% of my stuff and moving from the 3000 sq ft family home into my 972 sq ft cottage. I’m still working on keeping my possessions minimal and I really am enjoying reading these articles.