Do You Want To Be A Minimalist?
One thing I have learned over the last four years since leaving my full-time job is to DECIDE. This is what lead me to cultivating and designing a life intentionally on my terms.
You want to be a minimalist?
You think trading chores, shopping, cleaning, and maintaining for time sounds like living? Decide what is important to you!
See, at the core of minimalism is your ‘why’ and your values.
Why are you living the life you are living? What is your purpose?
What do you want your legacy to be? What are your values?
None of this has to be lofty. But it has to be important to you.
My ‘why’ is simple- freedom and family. If ever a decision starts encroaching on my freedom or my time with my family, then it is not worthy of my attention. It is so easy to decide if I want to add more to my life when I know what I am giving up in exchange. I ask myself often: does this help or hinder my quest for freedom?
Your ‘why’ is so important because it is SO easy to buy too many things at Christmas, overload on clothes at the mall, throw an over the top wasteful party. But knowing how this measures up to your ‘why’ and your values helps make these decisions a lot easier.
5 Steps to Start Your Minimalist Journey
1. Select a room or category to start with. I personally started with clothing and then moved room to room.
2. Sort everything into piles, need it/love it, hate it/don’t need it, in between. If you are starting with clothes you have to try everything on. EVERYTHING. How do you know if you truly love something if you haven’t tried it on? How many times do we buy things that look nice on the mannequin or online but hate it when we put it on. Be honest with yourself. Keep only things that you feel confident in, that you deem necessary and that you will use often. Keeping things for ‘what if’ scenarios are the enemy of minimalism.
3. For items in the hate it/don’t need it pile- find a charity to donate to. This starts circular economies. Just because it isn’t right for you, doesn’t mean it isn’t right for someone else. The beauty of this, is it keeps items in circulation instead of our typical throw away culture where everything ends ups in landfills.
4. For the items you love/need- create boundaries! You can create boundaries for everything! I choose to hang all my clothing in color pairings. That way I always know if something is missing, in the wash or needs to be replaced. I only keep what can fit in my closet hanging at all times. You can create boundaries for everything. Find a bin for kids’ toy, trays for toiletries, cabinets with designated spaces for dishes. Boundaries hold us accountable. If your hangers are full, or the toy bin is overflowing it is a clear signal that you don’t need anything else, or a chance to donate before you buy more.
5. For items that you’re unsure of- put them in a bin and pack them away. Put a reminder in for three months out. If you haven’t retrieved them from the bin you don’t need them. Donate them to someone who does.