As some of you may have guessed, I am a budding minimalism enthusiast. I still have lots to learn, but I have been successful in decluttering a lot of my home and I have been able to simplify my work schedule a little too. Several of the minimalist and simple living bloggers that I follow have answered the following questions, so I thought I would too — just to give you some more background on why have chosen to live this way.
1. What drew you to minimalism?
In the fall of 2014, I was diagnosed with Rheumatoid Arthritis, an auto-immune disease that attacks the joints. It was a wakeup call of sorts, and prompted me to take a look at my life and my lifestyle and make some changes. In doing research, (I always do research), I started reading blogs and watching YouTube videos about the minimalist lifestyle. It struck a cord with me, and I immediately began implementing some of the processes I was learning. Despite my extended family thinking that this is just a fad, I have no plans to go back to my previous way of life.
2. How did you start the de-cluttering process?
I started with my wardrobe first. It seemed the easiest, and there were plenty of decluttering how-to’s. Project 333 was an inspiration as well. Since then, I have decluttered and simplified most of our little cottage, and I am now beginning the really difficult process of working on the garage. Read why this is such a daunting task here.
3. Have you ever counted all your things? If so, how many things do you own?
Nope and I’m not gonna do it. I do count and keep track of my clothing and accessories, but that’s it. For me, minimalism is a feeling more than set rules. If my home feels cluttered, then it’s time to get rid of stuff. This may change in the next year or two as I have plans to move, but for right now, I’ll just stick with how I feel.
4. What are your tips for dealing with the desire for more?
I like to shop online. I don’t buy much, but I like to look at stuff. This satisfies my desire to have the item more than actually buying it would. I know, it’s strange, but it works for me. When I actually do need something, I do a ton of research first before I make a purchase. I also talk to my husband about my plans to purchase anything. This helps me decide if I even really need it or not. About half the time, I decide I really don’t need it and I can make do with what I already have. If I do purchase something, then something else has to leave the house.
5. How do you deal with non-minimalists in your life?
As I mentioned above, some of my extended family believes that this is just a phase I am going through and they have actually made fun of me. This doesn’t bother me because I know how I feel and how minimizing and simplifying has enriched my life. Why would I ever want to go back to my cluttered, busy life before? I try not to push my way of thinking on others, even when I see that they could benefit. It is a little difficult when my boys come home, since neither one is a minimalist, and their stuff tends to take over our small little house. I just try to remember that it’s just for a short time and that I love them.
6. Do you have any guilty pleasures where minimalism doesn’t apply?
As far as stuff goes, no. I mean, there are possessions that I really like — like my computer, cell phone, and camera gear — but I since I use them all the time, I don’t think that actually counts. Unfortunately, there are parts of my life that I still need to work on. I am a social media junky. I love to be on Twitter, YouTube, Instagram, Pinterest, and Facebook quite a bit, and it probably is too much. So, yeah, that would be my guilt pleasure where minimalism doesn’t apply — but probably should!