Is Maximalism Genetic?

Confession: I have the maximalist gene. It is in my DNA and this gene has been further strengthened by environment and circumstance.

Is this gene good or bad? How has the gene shaped my life? My values? Since I am a carrier of the maximalist gene, have I in turn, passed it on?

Well, let’s see. My mother is a maximalist, at 92 she is vibrant, disciplined, loves to eat, drives, and still loves to shop (although she is very critical of some of the styles). Her mother was a maximalist too as far as I can remember. My father was a different kind of maximalist…he was a collector of books, when I say we had a library growing up, it wasn’t from a decorator’s point of view, the books were read, they were for learning not occupying space on a shelf.

When I really knew this gene went way back is when I was in Austria and saw the different sets of china my ancestors collected…I mean wait…my children started laughing and saying that now they knew why I loved to set the table every night (themed). This was beyond their crazy mother…it was in the genes.

I have to often tamper by maximalist tendencies because I think in part, they are becoming irrelevant. People no longer enjoy over-the-top daily living, today lifestyles are becoming more simple, yet sadly not more refined. I am now trying to find a good place where I can find joy in using all that I already have without having to have more.

I have passed my maximalist gene to both of my children. However, they are wiser more modern souls. It is in their hands that this maximalist gene might recede and take on a form of sophisticated simplicity…at least this is my hope.