So as you can probably tell from my lack of posting, this time in my life has been going at 100000 miles per hour. I’ve recently been diagnosed with M.E (Chronic Fatigue Syndrome for the Americans in the audience), I’ve been working 2 jobs covering 7 days a week, I’ve been traveling to and from London for job interviews and, now I’ve been offered a contract, I am also preparing to move to the big city.
So how did this influence me to become a minimalist and put it into action over just 2 days? The spark really came when I decided to move to London, coincidentally I watched a Buzzfeed Video in which one of their crew members tried minimalism. Although the presenter failed miserably, they interviewed a minimalist ‘expert’ and she said something that struck a chord with me. She basically said that minimalism is no one thing, minimalism is about keeping stuff that you really love and getting rid of stuff you don’t love to help you live a more simple life.
Before I’d watched the video I thought minimalism was literally having nothing so, as a hoarder, it just wasn’t for me. However, if minimalism actually meant keeping all the thing you love I thought I would give it a try.
1) Firstly, I did nothing. I sat on my bed and had a really hard think about my favorite things, and why they were my favorite things. Turns out that the most important things I love and want to keep are: mementos from family and friends, things I’ve collected traveling, things that make me feel like a million bucks… and… that’s it.
2) What did this mean? This basically meant that when I got down to it, I don’t really care about stuff that doesn’t have a connection to my family or friends or traveling. Now, it’s easy to distinguish those things from the rest of my stuff but what about things that make me feel like a million bucks? Now that’s another story! Read how I minimalised my beauty products here and my wardrobe here.
3) Now what? For me, this was the most tedious part. I literally dragged everything off my shelves and out of my cupboards and laid it all out in collections together i.e. all books together, all shoes, all stationary etc. I also collected together all my little ‘projects’, all the little-broken bits and bobs and things I was saving that could be useful in the future- and was totally ruthless. Everything that I could fix then and there got fixed, anything else had to go. It was much harder than I thought it would be, but I just knew I was never going to get round to fixing it all…by the time I was done I had removed 2 bags of random junk from my room.
4) Once everything was in its own collections I went through each one individually and threw out the trash- the actual rubbish. For example, I got a piece of paper and tested all of my pens and pencils to see if they still worked, if they didn’t I just threw them out. I couldn’t believe how much stuff I got rid of just by doing this, literally imagine 2 full bin bags of actual garbage that I had been hoarding throughout my room. The motivation of literally throwing out this stuff and seeing such a huge difference that it made to my room kept me going.
5) Agin, I went back to the piles and put everything I knew I didn’t like into bags to donate to the charity shop, this wasn’t too hard because I already knew that I didn’t want these things. In each pile, I picked up each object and asked “do I really need this? Do I really love this? and does this have a home?”. If I couldn’t honestly say yes to 2/3, I just got rid of it. That’s how simple it was. Is this a perfect example of minimalism? Nope, but it’s the best that I can do right now and that’s ok. The point of minimalism isn’t to feel like you’re left with nothing, the whole point is to help you feel like you have more.
6) Now that I knew I was getting rid of all of this stuff, I separated everything that was in great condition and worth over £10 and listed the lot on eBay. If you feel like you’re flagging you don’t have to do this step but I really need the money!
7) Once this was done, I had to find homes for everything I was keeping. All the little scraps of mementos from my family; photos, letters, postcards and notes that I just couldn’t bear to part with went into a memories box no bigger than a small shoe box and once it was all together it wasn’t actually that much, it had all just been scattered throughout my room for so long it seemed like a mountain.
As it turned out, a lot of stuff was like this, everything fit back into place so much better than it had done before, it was easier to access and looked much nicer, neater and more ‘me’ than ever before. Now does this mean that my room is empty? Definitely not. I still have a lot of things that I’m just not ready to get rid of (and might never be) but in total, I’ve removed 10 bags worth of stuff from my room and a further 2 full bags of rubbish. That’s 12 bags of stuff I didn’t want from just my bedroom. I’d say that is huge progress. I don’t feel like I’ve lost anything because I know that everything I donated will go on to be used in the future, I’ve made £70 already off eBay and I guess I didn’t really like the stuff anyway, if I loved it, I would’ve kept it.
I hope this inspires someone to start a minimalist journey or even just gets you thinking about it in the future, starting is definitely the hardest part and now I’ve begun I actually think I see the world just a little bit differently, I’m really excited to just simplify my life
🌸 and start living a little more 🌸