I haven’t done much more on clearing out/decluttering just lately – I’ve a few things left to do: the dreaded cupboard under the stairs still beckons and my petite garden shed: which is in fact a privy from the 1780’s – will have to wait until Spring now as it’s 32, slippery, steps to the top of my garden..
So the clearing out waits – but the effects of my dance with minimalism is having an impact on me.
I initially began looking at minimalism when I stumbled upon an article online about decluttering – My blog post from October 2015 – here: Why Tidying Up Could Change Your Life – I went through my house and had a big clear out – 14 months on – I’ve had several more clear outs and will probably have some more – you chip away at it and as time goes by you find the things that you put by in your initial clear out – become to mean less and less.
As I became more interested in minimalism I found blogs about it online and followed several minimalists on twitter – here are my 2 favourite minimalists over on twitter: The Minimalists – worth following as they tweet and retweet some useful info etc..
I then took it a little further and realised that it had many benefits other than what most people assume is the SINGULAR benefit – of living in a HUGE starkly decorated and furnished – open plan apartment – you can do that if you have the dosh and wish to live that way: but it ain’t what it’s all about..
I’ve taken it further because at the time, and still, my income is quite small – I didn’t, and still don’t, have the dosh to live the life I used to inhabit. But for quite a long while it felt dreadful – I looked around and wasn’t in the position to buy anything much at all. There have been times when I’ve struggled to buy a new pair of jeans – and that feels proper rotten when they’ve great big holes in them. It resulted in me feeling as though my life was lacking.
But now – I feel differently – it’s caused a HUGE shift – both in the way I think and the way that I feel about stuff, life, time and money – and about an awful lot of other things too.
I think often it’s about breaking that cycle of want – it can seem like a big cavernous gaping thing – that want thing. We’re surrounded by so much stuff – there’s so much to want: it’s ok to want – if that’s your thing – but often we can fill our lives with wants and stuff and neglect what really matters and our underlying needs.
Currently this is my thinking and a list of positive bits and bobs that the peeling away of the layers of stuff and the reduction in time spent on shopping, acquiring and browsing has brought about —->
- I open my wardrobe and go –> I can wear that, that or that —> easy. I
- I have less stuff —> which means less time spent on cleaning & tidying.
- Most of the time my house is pretty neat and tidy – I can sit and chill sometimes and not feel a need to be doing stuff.
- I no longer feel a sense of lack —> I don’t have much —> but I realise I don’t need much either.
- It’s brought about a new found awareness about the things that are important to me and I can now see ways in which I can incorporate them into my life.
- I don’t feel so down trodden anymore.. I have my moments – but it’s not my overriding feeling.
- I can see ways in which I can make my life rich and purposeful —> and it doesn’t involve having loads of stuff. Or wanting something or other.
- I feel ever more confident about becoming financially secure and having funds to achieve some of the things I want to do. It feels doable.
- My carbon footprint is pretty low – it was low before: but it’s significantly lower now.
- You’ll often find me looking at things and thinking… and thinking – I try to imagine what would happen to the thing in front of me if I bought it – more often than not – I picture it sat in a cupboard or on a shelf after a wee while: and it holding little or no importance in my life.
- I have a savings account – it has a little stash of cash in it.
- I have less debts than 14 months ago.
- I don’t care so much about how the world spins on it’s commercialised axis.
- I buy locally more often than ever before.
- I can make a great meal out of very little.
I’m now at the point where I’m looking at my home and my furniture and questioning if I need it — or if indeed I want it. I laughed last night when I opened a set of drawers – draw by – draw – by draw.. and in each draw was just one lonesome item – a vest in one – a swimming costume in another – and a long sleeved top in another.. I look at my home and think if I got rid of my empty furniture I wouldn’t need as many rooms or as big a house. It would cost less too – less to heat, less council tax and less to rent. It would take less time to look after too – which in turn would mean more TIME for me and the things I want to do.
It’s a big step to contemplate – moving to what in effect would be a very tiny house – with not a lot of anything in it – a step that I’m not sure whether I’ll make – I love my current home. But I know I could love another house too..
Minimalism – one of those things that’s much much more than it seems – it allows you to shed lifes debris, acquire time and resources (often financial)- allowing an opening up of your life and providing an ability to question it completely.
This blogs – Image – is a tiny window in my living room – view is of some of the 32 steps leading to the top of my garden & the privy.