Minimalism looks different for everyone. For some, it could mean living in a small cottage away from everything social and civilized, for another it might mean going to work on a cycle rather than a car. The lifestyle without a microwave, oven or a refrigerator is just as minimalist as owning 10 articles of clothing and just a few essentials.
So don’t let others’ journey detour yours. The journey must start with the idea of contentment, because that’s what you’re reaching out to.
It’s a way of life that values what you have, as a part of yourself, that isn’t bought, not curated but created. The idea is simple- rid yourself of what you don’t need, items you’ve hoarded over the years under the ridiculous veil of need.
Not only this, but this detox-like lifestyle is about realizing that what you have is enough. That true value lies in what you can create on your own.
The first step towards minimalism? Realizing that it looks different for everyone.
The second step of minimalism? Get decluttering and de-owning.
If you’re new to this side of living, we have a few tips to get you started. Let this be a trial period before you completely transition into a life of thoughtfulness, pursuit and intentionality.
Give away clothes you don’t need
The average American family spends $1700 dollars on clothes every year. And for someone who used to buy a lot of clothes every year, I only wore around 30% of them. These rest were more of a decoration for my wardrobe than anything else. So let this be the place you start.
You probably have more clothes than you need. Even some that no longer fit but you’re probably waiting for the time when you’ll get on that diet and lose some pounds and then it’ll fit perfectly.
Just donate the clothes you don’t wear. If you haven’t worn them in the last two months, it’s just not happening. Let them go.
Simplify The House Decor
Let your house represent who you are. Now it could be a hoarder, a depressed alcoholic, or a sentimental person who truly values the small and simple things in life. If the portraits and pictures on your wall don’t signify a moment, a person, a memory or a feeling, it isn’t adding value to your life. You don’t require decorations all across the house.
How about you take one of those marijuana edibles, get in ‘high’ spirits and get cleaning? Declutter your work desk, maybe even remove everything for a few days and see how that works for you. If you don’t miss it, you don’t need to bring it back.
Cut Down on Kitchen Equipment
There is never enough space to keep those plates and platters and yet we never have enough. But the truth is, we just let our dirty dishes pile up because we have more.
No matter how many people live with you, you have more utensils than you need. Keep what is truly necessary and give away what is only adding to the clutter.
How to know if your kitchen is cluttered? If you have an issue finding the platter you need but see 5 others, it’s overcrowded in there. Just like clothes, if you haven’t intentionally looked for it in the last month or two, get it out.
I’ve seen people live with three times the number of couches. We get it, you’re preparing for when guests arrive and it has nothing to do with that banger sale at Ikea a few months ago.
But it’s taking up too much space. What could’ve been a good enough space for you to start working out at home or a space to start working on that art piece you always wanted is just covered with a 4 seater you don’t even need.
It doesn’t even have to be that big to be a big deal. Maybe you have that small corner table you didn’t need so you used it to keep your laundry on. It’s not worthwhile. Cut down on furniture bits you don’t need. When you look around your room, you’ll know exactly what’s used and what isn’t.
Change Your Entertainment Channels
No, we’re not talking about changing the channel of the television, move away from it. Rather than spending hours in a day in front of your television, or your laptop watching netflix, reduce the time you spend doing this. Also, 4 people living together don’t need 4 televisions, now do they?
Rather than having one in each room of the house, have one in the living room that you and your family watch together. The idea is to add value to your life, spending time with your loved ones and cutting down on things that only distract you or waste your time.
Minimalism isn’t a hard thing to follow but you need to resist temptations as you go about it. Just like when you start dieting, you feel the need to munch on something unhealthy but that desire slowly fades away when you stick to your routine. This lifestyle is something similar.