Minimalism is a journey, a journey to decluttering life and feeling free! Simplifying will not only help you eliminate stuff, but also eliminate stress.
I can honestly say this thing called minimalism is totally a journey. I don’t think I had any idea what was in store for me as I read The Life Changing Magic of Tidying Up by Marie Kondo. Since then, I have been getting rid of so many things I really didn’t need. I have been decluttering my life and I am starting to feel so much more freedom! I am not going to be an extreme minimalist by any means, but the small steps I am taking have helped me so far in tremendous ways.
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Here are some of the steps I have taken so far to achieve this feeling of freedom:
Freedom, and a little bit of panic I’ll admit, happened one Saturday. I had been trying to sell a bunch of stuff online for a couple of months. I had smaller things, and then some larger pieces of furniture. The furniture was stuff that had either never been a favorite, or was just taking up space. Somehow, all of that furniture was sold and picked up in one day.
When piece after piece left the house, I started wondering if I had made the right decision. That night I saw my kids laying in the open areas where the furniture used to be. Open areas that didn’t used to exist. They were loving it! Later, I went to set down a pile of papers on top of a piece of furniture we sold. As it dropped to the floor, I was convinced. It had needed to go since it was serving the purpose of a clutter catch-all. Since their initial departure, I haven’t missed the furniture one single bit.
We have donated 2 car loads full of clothing, toys, and other household items that we didn’t need anymore. We have also been able to give items to friends and family that will use those things more than we would.
I decided to say yes to my kids more. Requests for play, coloring, crafts, dance parties…yes. Yesterday I played Trouble with my kids for an hour (that was a VERY long game of Trouble) and later played Magnet Dolls with my daughter. I then employed her help with making dinner. I had time for these things and didn’t feel like I was getting behind the clock. Also, we were able to quickly find what we wanted to play with, and when we were done, we put everything away knowing right where it belonged.
Because I have already purged so many things, it is easier to clean up at night. Once the kids are in bed I have had more time to read! I read to the kids as they are falling asleep, and by myself later on. I find when I am more intentional with my time and schedule it out, the less I am just living until nap time and then again until bed time.
I have taken some drastic measures to limit my time on any type of media. I have:
- Set time limits for social media
- Turned my phone to silent for all text messages and set my husband’s phone number with a special ring tone. Any other call, they can leave a message and I will get back to them if I don’t have time right then.
- Only gotten online with a purpose. If I have a specific topic I am researching, a talk I am listening to, or person I need to text, I will get my phone out. Otherwise, it is up and away so I can focus on my own life rather than living vicariously through others’ status updates.
Honestly, putting my phone up and away has made the biggest change in my attitude, and therefore my day as a whole.
I read this article by Allie Casazza
the other day and thought this woman was a fly on the wall in my home. She described feeling worn out, like if she stopped moving the house would crumble because there was so much to do. She didn’t have time to play with the kids or stop to enjoy life. Even just a week ago, that is how I was feeling. I don’t know if it was actually seeing physical change in my house with getting the furniture out, being more intentional with my time, or setting my phone aside, but all of these things have contributed to a happier me.
If you haven’t thought about minimalism, maybe now is the time. Start small. It’s not just about eliminating stuff in your life, it’s about eliminating stress in your life.
Share your minimalist journey with me!