living a minimalist lifestyle
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“What I know for sure is that when you declutter whether it’s in your home, your head, or your heart it is astounding what will flow into that space that will enrich you, your life, and your family.” – Peter Walsh
I’m on the journey of living a minimalist lifestyle. That looks different to everyone, but to me, it means having a home that is visually appealing. It also means a house that doesn’t feel crowded and makes me feel stressed. Right now that’s exactly how my house feels!
Between all the new baby stuff, my toddlers ever-growing toy pile and my husbands hoarding tendencies my house stresses me out! It’s not only full of stuff but gets dirty faster then I can keep up because I’m constantly picking stuff up.
This summer I had gone through the house decluttering, but never completely finished. With just having Christmas and a newborn arrive a couple months ago it became full again.
I decided enough is enough. I’m going through each room in my house over the next couple weeks and having no mercy! Here are the tips and tricks I plan to use to make the process as painless as possible!
1. The pile system
I love this way of sorting everything out. I use three pile system, a pile of things to keep, things to donate, and things to throw away. This also gets everything off the shelves or whatever space the stuff is occupying, so I wash the surfaces off while I’m at it. Then I place everything I’m keeping back into its place nicely.
The donate pile get’s bagged up and put into my car. This way next time I’m out and about I can drop them off at my local woman’s and children’s shelter since most out stuff is kid clothes and toys. I’m careful about what I donate because I don’t want to give someone my trash. That’s just rude to the charities who have to sort through everything.
The trash pile obviously goes in the trash. I have a surprisingly high amount of broken items just lying around. We tend to not throw things away, even empty boxes. oops…
2. The old “if it brings you joy” method
Minimalism has turned me towards wanting a hygge life. Definition of hygge – a quality of coziness and comfortable conviviality that engenders a feeling of contentment or well-being. This Danish word it changing peoples lives, mine among them! I want my home to be as warm and cozy as possible. This is why I use the if it brings you joy method.
If it brings you joy, you keep it. If it doesn’t out it goes! I love the way of thinking, why keep something that you really don’t care about? I want my house to only contain items that make me happy or are necessary!
3. Get rid of duplicates
We use to have duplicates of several things. We had two food processors, two whisks, you name it! I didn’t need two food processors at once and if I really needed to use it again before it got washed, I’d rinse it by hand. The other one was just taking up space in my pantry. This decluttering session for me won’t involve as many duplicate items since I purged the first time, but it was a big thing that first decluttering.
Also, think of dishes and silverware, yes you need more than one, but do you really need 20 for a say a family of four? Guest are expected, but at most you need 10 plates and silverware. If you host big parties for the holidays maybe keep a nice set in your garage, so it’s not taking up cupboard space?
- Capsule wardrobe for children
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- Simple living as a stay at home mom
4. Think about starting a capsule wardrobe
I’ve been working on creating a capsule wardrobe since this summer. I’m sure why since I was pregnant and will need to start over my summer wardrobe next year. Oh well.
Creating a capsule wardrobe is a whole other blog post in its self but here’s the short version. You get a set number of clothes such as 5 t-shirts, 5 pants, and accessories so you can create new outfits with the few pieces you have. Think high-quality clothes, so you don’t have to replace them every season. I really enjoy getting quality clothes from kohl’s and Macy’s.This way your closest isn’t jammed packed and it’s just less stressful. This is coming from a girl who loves to shop!
5. Get rid of the half-finished projects
I have so many half finished projects hanging around the house that I’ll never finish. Two kids just don’t make that possible. Sure one day they’ll be old enough that I can have projects again, but by then I’ll either not want to do the same project or I can get new supplies.
Even if you don’t have kids like me, how likely are you to finish a project that’s been sitting there for a year? Your best bet is to get rid of the clutter. If you’re going to finish it get a time set that you have to have it finished by or it goes. This way it doesn’t sit for another year taking up space.
6. Keeping the clutter out
Once I get everything decluttered and organized I don’t want to do it again! This means only buying things that are absolutely necessary or something I love. Keeping grandparents in check is another thing I need to work on. My mother in law is amazing, but she buys a ton of clothes and toys for the kids that take up space. I need to work on asking about experience gifts for the kids instead.
“your home is a living place, not a storage space.”
Having a minimalist home is only one part of the equation. Being a minimalist can impart all parts of your life, such as living more simply. What do you do to become more minimalist? I highly recommend the book The Life-Changing Magic of Tidying Up: The Japanese Art of Decluttering and Organizing