We are not minimalists. We do not call ourselves minimalists, and when people ask if we are trying to be minimalists we tell them no. Our small home has more than one chair, our closet has more than 20 items of clothing, our kids have more than 3 toys each, and we have more than one pot and one pan. We are not trying to become minimalists… yet.
We have many goals during this season of life. Although we are not minimalists, we are implementing some of the principals of minimalism into our daily lives. In our journey to simplify life we always come back to our home. We spend a large amount of time in our homes. A simple way to start simplifying our lives is to start at home. Now that we live in under 1,000 square feet, it’s more important than ever to stay committed to keeping a clean, clutter free home. We want to offer a few quick tips on how to start simplifying your life today by starting at home!
1. A Quick Cleanup.
Let’s start small. Pick one room in your home. Grab your cleaning supplies, and start with a deep clean of that single room. Now a deep clean to one person may have different meaning than to another person. In an attempt to standardize the meaning of “deep clean” for the purpose of this post, let’s say it will involve dusting shelves, vacuuming, and giving everything an all around good cleaning/dusting.
2. Find the Purpose.
As you are cleaning the room, picking up objects off the floor, or sorting through objects and books on your shelves, begin asking yourself one simple question; “what is this item’s purpose in my home and in my life?” The concept is simple: we are trying to identify what is necessary in our home and life, versus what is desired to be in our home and life. This is a very difficult question to truthfully answer because we often find value in our possessions. We look at certain possessions as holding memories, or some level of meaning in our lives. We think we need something, but we really don’t. We tell ourselves we will use it one day, but never do. We say it’s sentimental, but the last time you listened to that musical clown box was 10 years ago.
We all deserve to have more simple, stress-free lives that are driven by relationships and experiences, rather than by material objects. As we enter into new seasons we will create new memories and have no items to bring into our homes, for that season. Remember this is just one room in your home. As you clean and find items that have lost their purpose in your home or life, set them aside.
3. Let It Go.
Here comes the difficult part. It’s time to let it go. And no, I’m not talking about the Disney movie Frozen. Although it’s probably too late and you’re already singing the song in your head. In all seriousness though, as we find items that have no purpose or meaning in our lives, we have to do something with them. There are multiple options here. If you’re extremely attached to your possessions, maybe start simple by renting a storage unit and placing those items in there temporarily until you grow less attached by not having them around as often.
You could also donate those items. Are you thrifty? Try selling the items online, but the goal here is to remove them from your home. So temporarily storing them in your closet or garage “because you’re trying to sell them” is not an option. Remember, they have no purpose or place in your home or life, so it’s time to “LET IT GO! LET IT GO!” (Are you singing the song yet?)
No matter where you are in your life, whether you’re single in college, just married, starting a family, or a retired empty-nester, we could all use less stress and a more simple life. So start small, and use these tips as a guide to start simplifying your life today!