Powell lived with her fabulously wealthy husband in a house often mostly devoid of furniture, because he didn't want his space infiltrated with anything he didn't feel perfectly sure of.
It would be hard to get fabulously wealthy if all consumers were so resistant to purchasing, but it might be a good attitude for individual consumers to adopt. Especially if you live alone. It's great to appreciate the open, uncluttered space you have and to save your money. But if you live with someone else, she'd better share or at least love that attitude, because if those empty spaces are perceived as deprivations, it's going to hurt — especially if she breaks away and taps into that pile of money you kept instead of blowing on upholstered merchandise.
And then there's the pristine space that is the inside of your body. You can be very fussy about what you let in there, and you can wait and wait until your sure it's exactly right, and then what? From the Isaacson biography:
To the horror of his friends and wife, Jobs decided not to have surgery to remove the tumor, which was the only accepted medical approach. “I really didn’t want them to open up my body...” he told me years later with a hint of regret....I love the default position of doing nothing. First, do no harm. That's a fine aphorism. A saying I made up that I've relied on for decades and care about immensely is: Better than nothing is a high standard. But it's not such a high standard that it's only beaten by perfection. Perfect is the enemy of good. Now, there's a great saying. Get the cancer surgery that saves your life. And if your wife wants a sofa and she can't explain exactly why... you'd better think about it. Empty space can get really empty.
“The big thing was that he really was not ready to open his body,” Powell recalled. “It’s hard to push someone to do that.”