Thoughts on minimalism? I know we hear people talk about it, but why? There is no secret when it comes to living a minimalist life and it does take a conscious effort to realize that the things we accumulate over time, are just that: things.
Maybe it was my upbringing or maybe as I got older and kept moving, the less I needed to survive… here is a little back story.
Growing up, all the places I’ve lived or visited were jam-packed with things, things that would keep me from playing on the weekend because I would be too busy cleaning those things that made no sense to have in the first place.
One of the biggest impressions was my mother’s pen jar: as crazy as it sounds, it was in fact, a jar Full-O-Pens. Every place she went, doctors, friends, random location, she would somehow end up taking a pen (we are a little guilty of this, am I right?!)
However, that jar moved with us from California all the way to Hawai’i… like what?! So many questions, is it haunted and secretly followed my family clear across the ocean? Why was this something that my mom needed to keep? Which then lead to another series of questions that somehow changed the course of my life today – go figure.
Small moment = child liberation, hah!
I honestly Yahoo-ed “how to not have so much crap” but at the time no one was really talking about minimalism. I mean, I don’t need someone to tell me HOW to get rid of my stuff, it is more about the motivational story behind getting organized that makes reading about or watching hoarding shows so interesting, don’t you think?
I love to surround myself with things that really make me happy, otherwise why do I have it? I’m excited to share this stuff with you guys because I didn’t have anyone to encourage me to take control of my unnecessary accumulation.
YOU CAN do this, YOU CAN take control of your life and your things.
Letting go isn’t easy, but when you finally do, it is like a huge burden being lifted off your shoulders, the freedom boulder.
Don’t you want that? I know I did… here are a few tips to help you get started on your minimalism journey!
Take a deep breath…
3 Steps for Beginner Minimalists
Step #1: Set your own rules, find your why, write it out.
If you are anything like me, you don’t want to spend an entire day cleaning: you have projects too work on, books to read, places to go, people to see, animals to pet, traveling to travel! All of it and more!
Really understanding why you want to live more simply is important, this will help you remember what matters in your life, helps set your own boundaries, and rules. List your reasons and pin them up so you can see them every day: I can never find anything, I feel cluttered, I want to be more organized, I want better spending habits… write it all out and own it.
Step #2: Seeing double?
This one is popular amongst books and blogs but extremely helpful, if you have two of something, you really only need one. Take a stroll around your place, if you have two of something, throw one in a box and leave it somewhere for 30 days. If after those 30 days you HAVE NOT used it, sell it, donate it, or throw it out.
(Pretty easy right?! See, I knew you could do this…)
Step #3: Capsule Closet
This one can be a little tough for some people but can also bring you instant gratification.
Time to get in that closet!
Capsule wardrobes are essential items of clothing that can’t go out of fashion, and that go with any other item in your wardrobe. For example, a black top, basic blue jeans, a solid colored jacket. These items are interchangeable, you don’t have to start from scratch, just take a closer look at what you have and pull out your basics.
Try to limit your wardrobe to 33-50 items of clothing: not including socks, underwear, and bras.
Make three piles:
- Capsule – Essentials
- Donate - Items you haven’t worn in 3 months
- Trash - Items that have holes or old undergarments
- Never keep anything you feel uncomfortable in
- Stick with a similar, flattering color palette to make sure all your clothes coordinate.
- Try these steps one at a time and continue to take tiny steps and lean into the life you want to create.
So, I know that was a lot, but you know what? You are going to crush this, just like you crush everything else!
Choosing to read this far, means you are that much closer to making great changes in your life, and that’s amazing.
Baby steps friend, I do this exercise every six months to make sure that what I have, is what I love. Minimalism has also helped me be more aware of my spending habits. I can honestly say that I used to buy a lot of “girl” products before and for no reason at all. Now, I ask myself important questions before I purchase like, can I live without this? Will it last for years? It is of value?
These are the questions we need to ask ourselves, and these are the questions we over look because, shopping therapy… right?
No! We don’t need things to make us happy, we need experiences, we need time, we need a surrounding space that brings us happiness. That’s ultimately what I want for you, for everyone - to be happy living a life that you have created.
I know, I know, you’re like S, stop talking! I just get really excited about minimalism because It’s so life changing!