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I’m not an extreme minimalist by any means. I don’t live in a tiny house with empty walls and one pair of shoes, but I do prefer a simple de-cluttered lifestyle. The idea of less in my cabinets, less on my counters and less in my life in general brings me joy. For me, getting started in minimizing my possessions has been fun. It’s been kind of a renewing and therapeutic experience for me. To begin minimizing your home, you don’t need to be extreme about it.
Here are my tips:
Read Blogs and Watch Videos About Minimalism
Nothing will inspire you to declutter more than watching someone else do it. I can’t tell you how many times I’ve watched a video on YouTube about de-cluttering, only to find myself elbow deep in my closet under a pile of clothes trying to determine which clothes I want to keep. There are also so many wonderful blogs about minimalism that are sure to get you inspired. My favorite sites are: The Minimalists and Becoming Minimalist.
Keep Things You Love
This is a big myth in the minimalist community. People think to be a minimalist you have to only have a few items of everything, but that is not true at all. I have few clothes, because I’m not into fashion. I have a lot of books, makeup products and décor because those things bring me joy. My kids also have an obscene amount of toys because they LOVE their toys, so I let that go and do my best to organize them. If you love to read, keep your books. If you love to cook, enjoy your kitchen gadgets. Just focus on minimizing and decluttering in the areas that you actually want to.
Purchase Things that are Functional
When we moved into our new home, I got rid of so much “stuff” that was no longer serving us well. As a busy mom, I need well made furniture that serves a purpose. Don’t get me wrong I love decor as well, but not if it adds clutter. I buy or keep decor that makes me smile or serves a purpose. Remember minimalism looks different for every one. It’s about intentional living NOT deprivation. I have a weakness for storage benches and console tables because they offer storage for the things I don’t want out in plain sight. I love to keep shoes, purses or toys in hidden places that aren’t adding clutter to my home. I recommend being very intentional about furniture purchases, make sure it offers you a functional purpose or at the very least a sense of joy. Just choose to keep and buy what you love, and I promise your home will be more peaceful and functional.
Don’t Force Everyone in Your House to be on Board
My husband it pretty good about letting go of clothes he doesn’t wear or things he no longer uses, but if I go near his tools or ask him to declutter his garage (I mean shop) I get a death stare, so I leave him alone in that area. He keeps it tidy so I back off and let him decide what brings him joy.
Don’t rush into the process and de-clutter and organize every square inch of your home in three days. You’ll hit a tired spell that will force you to either give up, leaving you feeling like a failure, or throw out everything you own out of pure delirium. Just take on one small project on at a time and devote all your energy to that until you find the motivation for the next project. New habits and lifestyles take time, so start slow and enjoy the process of keeping things you love, and getting rid of the rest.