Tag Archives: declutter

Comfort and Clutter: Spring Cleaning is About Values

Spring Cleaning Time

 

Since Easter Monday I have been decluttering each day. This is my version of spring cleaning.

There are a lot of YouTube videos and blog articles on the topic of minimalism. I always tell people that you don’t have to be a minimalist to get useful information, tips, and advice from minimalists. Minimalism isn’t for me at this time, but I seek out information from minimalists because they don’t just show you how to declutter; their approach removing things from your space involves looking at reasons why you have a difficult time getting rid of items, why you purchase certain things, and why excess of anything (material goods, food, physical space, etc.) is a part of your life.

By the time I ended my first day of mass decluttering I ended up getting rid of 35 books. Some of these books had been a part of my life since 2005, some, for less than a month. I also threw away two standard recycle bags full of paper (research and journal articles) that I had used over the years to write various papers for my graduate courses. As I sat down and looked at these bags I wondered why I had kept these books and papers; what a waste of much needed space. My bookshelves and paper piles were not messy, instead, they were neatly ordered by topic and area of research. Sometimes having a tidy space gives the impression that because everything is neat and orderly, it somehow has a purpose; it gives the false impression that it belongs in the home.

 

Here are three great values that I have learned from minimalists in the past week. I highly recommend seeking out information from different types of minimalists for when you are ready to declutter, spring clean, go shopping, or make lifestyle changes about the material goods you want to keep as part of your life.

 

1.

Find what works for you.  Everyone has a different motivation, goal, or style.  Figure out what yours is, and stick to it. For me, the results were my motivation. The thought of walking into a clutter-free home where everything had its place and was hand-selected because it brought me joy, was very appealing.” Tania McDonald from, Thefinancialdiet.com

http://thefinancialdiet.com/6-realistic-ways-to-practice-minimalism-that-dont-suck/

2.

“No matter what your conviction is about living with less, just know that it doesn’t have to look any one way. One of the most beautiful aspects of a minimalistic lifestyle is that you can shape it however you like. Items other people need may not be items you need. The role stuff plays in our lives is solely based on the needs of the owner.” Melanie and Jeremy Scroggins from Winnebago Life

https://winnebagolife.com/2017/11/a-realistic-view-of-minimalism

3.

“Decorations. Many of the decorations in our homes hold no personal value to our lives. They just simply happened to match the color of the carpet or be on sale when we walked into the store. Unfortunately, they are distracting you and your guests from the decorations in your home that share your story and highlight your values. Take a moment to walk through your home with a discerning eye. Leave only the decorations that are the most meaningful and the most beautiful. Your home will begin to share your story in a beautiful way. And your old decorations will likely end up on sale at your next garage sale.” Joshua Becker from Becoming Minimalist

https://www.becomingminimalist.com/sample-living-with-less/

Hate Doing Dishes

Minimalism or Organization: What’s the Real Problem?

Decisions, Decisions, Decisions…

I’ve been aiming to become a minimalist for a few years and I have yet to get it right. I place too much value on the things I have and anxiety keeps me from throwing unnecessary items in the garbage (or not bringing them into the house in the first place).

In my mind I keep telling myself I need a trip to IKEA with a $4,000 budget and I’ll finally be a minimalist. I’ve convinced myself that I can’t possibly be a minimalist with out “minimalist” style furnishings. The truth is, I might actually be desiring large “minimalist” storage oriented furniture so I can hide all my clutter and not think about it.

Ikea Wardrobe

After much failed attempts at minimalism I realized I actually like having lots of stuff; what I don’t like is having large amounts of clutter.

I want to have 30 pairs of foot ware, but I don’t want all 30 of them at the front door.

I want to have 10 pairs of jeans, 40 shirts, and 90 pairs of dress pants to choose from; what I don’t want is laundry.

I’ve been going about minimalism all wrong, because my core issue wasn’t about how much belongings I had or any emotional attachments to what I did own. My actual core issue was learning how to organize what I had. I do have to work hard at decluttering on a regular basis, but organization, not minimalism is what I have to focus on.

I have a feeling this might be why some people have been failing at minimalism.

Making Changes: Things to Think About

When you decide to make changes in your life, it’s good to ask yourself some questions before moving forward:

-What is it you actually want to change? Name it.

-Why do you want to make these changes?

-What is happening in your life that has led to you wanting to make changes?

-Acknowledge any negative feelings you have about what you are hoping to change.

-Remember, change is step-by-step and is never instant.

-You’re not changing your entire life, you are changing something about your life. Change isn’t always meant to be an overhaul. Sometimes change is simple, yet effective.

-You’re not only changing your mindset, you are changing your behaviour. There is a difference, but sometimes it’s not easy for us to differentiate between the two.