My personal journey towards a more minimalist lifestyle
How I regained my sanity in a sea of clutter... And how you can too!
I felt as if I was stopped in my tracks by fear—fear of losing control over my time, my finances, my home, my businesses, my ability to get things done. Sound familiar?
And then I discovered a new way, minimalism. At first I was sceptical, how could having less in my home really help with stress, health, headspace....
The honest trust is.... SO much, it's given me my life back. My home is happier, my head is clearer, my family are happier, all just by having less. A simple concept that packs so much power.
Because I feel so strongly about the positive impact that minimalism is having on every area of my life, I thought I would share how to get started, for those of you who are in the same boat.
I joined a facebook group for entrepreneurs and started hearing more and more about minimalism, and how many of the members we're using this to keep all the plates spinning.
The more I learned about it, the more I realised that the stress I was feeling in so many areas of my life stemmed from one source—clutter. Stuff. Simple stuff.
First Things First....
Before we jump in, I think it's important to get clear on what minimalism is..... and isn't.
The minimalist lifestyle isn't just throw out everything you own and live on the bare essentials, it's not just decluttering and it's definitely not organisation (trust me on this organisation is the enemy to minimalism)
The minimalist lifestyle is about shaping your life around things that bring you genuine value, and decluttering those that add to the chaos. It's about living intentionally and finding the elements that are actually important to you. And when you find those things, it will also help you remove the things that are keeping your home, head and life a little chaotic.
I have to admit that in the beginning, I was a tad skeptical. I didn’t believe that the possessions I had accumulated over the years were the same items that were making my life so chaotic.
After all, I wasn’t a hoarder. I didn’t have stacks of old newspapers I needed to crawl over or a million knick knacks on display.
Yet there was mess everywhere. And I’m not talking about dirty dishes and piles of laundry (although we all have our moments).
I’m talking about being in home renovation mode for a period of several years and not realising that the renovation was only playing a tiny role in the chaos.
I was struggling to find time for anything.
You know that feeling when, no matter how much time you spend trying to catch up, you don’t ever quite get there? You can have a plan for the day, but before you know it, the day is done and your list of To Dos is the same as it was when you started. Totally discouraging.
And so I decided to do something about it.
Over a period of about three weeks, I tore through my home like a woman possessed.
I emptied wardrobes, kitchen cabinets, junk drawers, understairs cupboards, surfaces, vanities, shelves, boxes. And I started purging.
I gave things away, threw things away, dropped them off at recycling places.
Old mobile phones, paint cans with barely enough paint to coat a roller, bags and bags and bags of things, and all those odds and sods that I never even knew I owned.
I mean, seriously… in what world will I ever be needing a roll of spare electrical wiring, bags of hardened cement, 220 hair grips, gone off body lotion (you'll have this too if you check), 8 pyrex dishes, and 34 cups?
My bathroom cabinet was so full that I couldn't actually get anything else into it. I started here, and so should you too. Just take this one place.... How many items did I have to give my attention to before I find the one thing I am looking for? This. Is. Everything.
The more I discovered how unnecessary half of my possessions were, the more I realised how liberating it felt getting rid of them.
If you’re reading this and feel that you need a clutter intervention, I’m here for you.
When I was a newbie swimming in unchartered waters, it really did feel like I had been tossed a lifeline. Minimalism triggered the desire in me to simplify and regain control of my life.
If you’ve ever considered a more minimalist lifestyle, now’s the perfect time to see if it’s for you.
Join our tribe of HomeEnvy members and let’s dive in together. Let’s share ideas and tips, talk about what worked for us and what didn’t and encourage each other every step of the way. If you prefer flying solo, read our comments and use whatever information you feel is helpful. Do whatever works for you.
I started my journey by decluttering and it was liberating.
I finally felt that I was regaining control.
Tidying up became a breeze because I had less to work around and more time to do it.
When I was looking for something, I found it.
My to-do list got shorter. My head felt clearer. I was more productive and more efficient. I loved the change that was happening and I knew that I needed to continue.
I had a purpose, a WHY - I wanted and needed to free myself of all the things that were keeping me from doing what I wanted to be doing - enjoying time with my family (actually having time to spend with my family.)
Today, I invite you to take the first step and determine your WHY.
Ask yourself WHY you feel you would benefit from having less stuff.
Is it because you are stressed out? Overwhelmed? Feel that you cannot function? How do you feel when visitors drop by unannounced? Thrilled to see them or embarrassed that your home is a disaster?
What are you hoping that decluttering will help you to accomplish? A calmer life? Less time spent on cleaning and more time for family? Time to devote to a business or new venture? Or perhaps it’s time for a personal hobby.
A good way to determine your intention is to write it down.
What would an uncluttered home mean to you? Once this is down on paper, pin it to a notice board or stick a postit note where you can see it. Let it be in plain view so you are always reminded of why you want to make a change…
Join us and stay tuned—more tips and tricks are coming your way. Knowing your WHY was step one!
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