Ever since I watched the documentary ‘Minimalism: A Documentary about the important things’, I have been fangirling and preaching about Minimalism. Here is where I will fill you all in on why I think it is so fabbo..
Obviously, the most important factor is that you will no longer be surrounded by piles of discarded clothes, unidentifiable objects strewn across the floor, or avalanches of stuff falling on top of you out of cupboards. Minimalism is about keeping belongings in your house, only if you love them or need them and they serve a purpose. We are not talking about those casual tidy up sessions you do in a rush before a friend comes round, but a thoroughly deep cleanse with you looking in every cupboard, draw and wardrobe, and looking at every individual item and asking the questions ‘Do I love it?, Do I need it?’ And ‘when did I last use it?’ The phrase “Tidy house, tidy mind” isn’t around for nothing. Now that you have cleared away every unused and unloved item in your home, your mind will no longer be subconsciously whispering away, ‘Oh yeah, I need to hem that dress, that’s been hanging there for months, whose shoe is that?’ And so on. The mind will clear and be free to think about the important things.
No more Over Choice
Over choice is the subconscious sense of panic that comes over us when we are faced by a wall of differently named and packaged, types of porridge oat or five different work dresses in our wardrobes, all a similar shade of pink. Minimalism stops this choice, overwhelm. In terms of the weekly food shop, know what you like and stick to it. Over choice isn’t just found in the shops, it hits us out of our piles of dusty cookery books waiting to be used, the magazine recipe cut outs and the endless food ideas on Pinterest. Forget all those, and if you haven’t used those recipe books in a while, they should be out of the door anyway! Just think about your favourite meals and if you need to spice them up a bit, then try different variations and flavours. My method of food shopping is to pick the cheapest option, then if it’s not quite right, go for the next cheapest. A sure fire way to avoid getting distracted by pretty coloured packaging and saving money in the process.
Now you’ve sorted through your entire hoard, I’m guessing you have bags and bags to get rid of. Some of the things that you know you don’t really love or use can still be hard to actually get out of the door and get rid of, as, for some reason, we still have an ingrained connection with that old and overplayed Westlife CD. Something that always softens the blow is a wedge of hard earned cash. Shove your bags of unwanted things in your car boot; chuck a fold up painters table on top, and you’re away. One girl’s tut is another girl’s treasure, so to speak. A few weekends of car booting here and there and I had racked up nearly 400 pounds to spend on a trip to Amsterdam. Selling larger or more expensive items might be best for an online market, such as Shpock, gumtree or Facebook.
Dosh also comes in the form of saving those spends, with the same questions you asked yourself about the items you already own, you need to take these questions out to shops and say them (in your head obviously) with every product you pick up. For example, do I really need that Unicorn money pot? Absolutely not. Did I scamper over to it like a crazed moth to a flame? Yes. However, 1, I’ll never use it as I never have change on me. 2. Sure I like it but I don’t have a deep love for it and 3. It doesn’t go with any of my home décor schemes anyway! (A blog post about ‘Minimalist décor’ is coming soon!)
The Satisfaction of Generosity
If within your bags of trinkets there are items you can’t sell, the next best thing is to either donate to a charity or see whether friends or family could make use of anything. Be careful not to fall into the trap of your hoard becoming a family members hoard though, as you may just be passing on the subconscious whisperings. Make sure they love it or need it too. Giving to others is known to promote happiness. It’s a win-win!
Time To Do What The Hell You Want!
With extra dosh comes flexibility. Because you’re buying only what you need and not cashing after that next pay day and striving to get that extravagantly priced car that you definitely don’t need, you may have the flexibility to change your working hours. Now the money that you slaved away in the 9-5 for won’t seem so essential. This spare time can be used for the important things like seeing family, friends, travel, pursuing the hobbies that you love or just doing what the hell you want to do. As my mum has always said, “Time is precious”.
The Social Media Cull
There is nothing more satisfying than happily clicking the unfriend or unfollow buttons of old flames, grown apart friends, or the spreaders of negative vibes. Although it would be nice to cull the whole notion of social media as scrolling mindlessly, I’m sure isn’t good for anyone’s soul but if you can resist falling into the black hole, they do have their positives. Positives such as; Facebook for keeping up with local events or friends social events and The Gram for getting your name and brand out there if you have a start-up business. As in life, social media should only be filled with what you need, use or love.
This article was written by Karly Charrington. Check out Karly’s blog here, and be sure to message her if you need any tips or advice on all things minimalism!