The “100 Thing Challenge”

At ETR, we’re all in favor of simplifying your life.

Michael Masterson has been encouraging ETR readers to simplify their business lives for years. “If you think it will mean making less money, enjoying less success, maybe even being less effective as a businessperson,” Michael told us, “think again. It’s about having more – not less – of the good things. More productivity. More passion. More meaning, love, friendship, and serenity.”

And in a two-part article for ETR, Charlie Byrne told us how he and his wife applied this concept to their personal lives – by not only finding a way to get rid of the “stuff” closing in on them,  but also by figuring out a way to profit from it (in more ways than one).

Now Dave Bruno, a 37-year-old Web editor, has taken this idea to an extreme. He has challenged himself to live with no more than 100 personal possessions for an entire year – though he’s made a few exceptions. (Underwear and socks, for example. Each of these categories counts as one thing. And he’s keeping “one library” of books.)

“The 100 Thing Challenge is a personal project,” says Dave, “a way for me to fight consumerism. What’s behind it? My belief that material possessions can be good when they serve a greater purpose than possession alone. We should make better use of our things than just owning them. My hope is that by living a year with 100 personal things, I’ll be able to show that an average American guy does not need tons of stuff to live the good life.”

To find out more about Dave’s “100 Thing Challenge,” check out his website (

And in case you’re wondering… yes, he is going to write a book about it.

But we’re more interested in you than in how Dave is going to make money from his “experiment.” We want to know what you’ve done to simplify your life as a result of what you’ve learned from ETR. How has it changed the way you think? How has it changed the way you work? How has it helped you reach your goals? Let us know by posting your comments here.