Doesn’t everyone wish they could be one of those people that lives with just one box of stuff? Wouldn’t that be great.
An important thing to note is that there is no such thing as a perfect minimalist because it means different things to different people. I might think I have little stuff but actually to someone else it’s actually loads! In reality I have a lot of stuff and everyone knows it…
As I wrote in THIS post a couple of weeks ago, I have been treating my recent move to Brighton as a attempt at a fresh start. Whilst I was packing I donated a lot of stuff that I no longer needed or books that I wasn’t going to read again but somehow I still had a small van full of stuff that I had to somehow squeeze into my new room.
I don’t quite know how to describe this but while I was unpacking, I was looking at things and I realised that there were things I no longer felt I needed but I felt like I really wanted them back when I was in my old house. It’s really hard to put it into words but take my clothes for example, there are certain items that I wore a lot in my old town but now that I am somewhere else I just don’t feel like wearing them, they don’t feel very me. A fresh start comes with fresh clothes, which is why there will be a haul coming very soon!
So I have decided yet again to try and minimalise my stuff which will be beneficial in the long term because I am probably going to be moving around a lot over the next few years, and I thought I’d share some tips to help y’all out if you’re in a similar situation!
Is this just an excuse to show off my new room? Sort of…
I wrote a whole post about the concept of minimalism ages ago if you want to check that out HERE, but here’s a recap. I read THIS great article which made some great points about what it means to a minimalist so I wanted to share some points from that.
Minimalism is about owning fewer possessions but that doesn’t mean owning nothing, it’s important to remember that! It is intentionally living with only the things that you need. I think if everyone reading this right now looked around their space, you would see SO much stuff that you don’t actually need. Sure it may be stuff that you want but is it actually stuff that you need? From this you can get slowly get rid of the stuff that’s just lying around not serving any function in your life. You want things around you that are gonna add value.
An amazing quote I love from that article is, we should be “intentionally promoting things we most value and removing everything else that distracts us.”
Getting rid of the stuff that you don’t actually need can give you “freedom from the passion to possess”, because we live in society full of unnecessary stuff. Everywhere you look and with everything you watch, there’s adverts there trying to sell you stuff you don’t need but watching it makes you question if you need it and then sometimes end up buying it. This may make the companies happy, but it’s not gonna make you happy. I often find that when there is a lot of clutter around I can’t actually focus on things like uni work or even writing a blog post because there’s so much going on in my environment.
Obviously this all looks different for different people because people all have different needs. So someone who has young kids is gonna need different stuff compared to someone who lives on their own. Like with me I have a lot of art stuff and a lot of clothing because I am a fashion student. Okay some may say that you don’t need a lot of clothing, but it’s something that brings me so much joy!
If you have ever read or heard of Marie Kondo then you may know all about her way of tidying and decluttering which is all about only having the things that spark joy. So if you are struggling to realise the things that you need then think about the things in your space that bring you joy. If it doesn’t bring you joy and you don’t need it then it needs to go, it’s easy!
Once you have got rid of bags of stuff, it often feels like such a relief. As the distractions go from your environment it sort of gives you a clearer mind. Clearing your space can seriously bring you so much joy.
But then there’s often the issue of trying not to accumulate this stuff back because it’s so easy to go out and just buy loads of more things to fill the empty spaces. But the empty spaces in your environment can be good.
Since moving I have sort of come up with a few rules so that I don’t end up needing to hiring an even bigger van when I move again:
So I have this cute little bookshelf which I painted myself, and it’s just adorable, as you can tell I’ve gone for a purple theme in this room. Anyway… I have said to myself that I can only buy books if they’ll fit on this book shelf. As you can see, there’s space for about 8 or so more books and then I can’t buy anymore unless I get rid of the ones I’ve got. If that all makes sense. I do also own the whole Harry Potter series but that takes up a lot of room so I keep it elsewhere and obviously it would be unthinkable to get rid of it.
I sort of apply this rule to other parts of my room such as my magazine rack, once it’s full then I get rid of some. And also my art supplies cupboard which is currently full, so I can’t buy anything else until I have used up what I have. I definitely think this can be applied to so much around the house!
It’s no secret that I own a lot of clothing, I love fashion. I often end up charity shopping and coming back with a large amount of clothing and to make sure that I don’t end up with wayyyy to much stuff, I have decided that for everything new I buy I have to get rid of something in my wardrobe. I have clothes that I hardly wear but never get rid of so this is an opportunity to donate some of my less loved clothing to charity shops where someone else can pick it up and love it as much as I did. I would definitely recommend this method to anyone else with an overflowing wardrobe!
Another thing I seem to own a lot of is make up. I LOVE doing my make up but I have come to the realisation that I have way to much and it’s so unnecessary because I use the same stuff all the time. I can still doing all my crazy looks but with minimal products, I only need one eyeshadow palette not 8. I used to buy so much make up when I was younger because I watch all the beauty YouTubers and thought I needed it all. It’s also the same with beauty products, I seem to have accumulated so much over the years and I hardly use them and I’m sure I’m not the only one.
Instead of just throwing it out, you could always give it away to friends who would use it or what I’m doing is I am trying to use it up. So once I have used up the make up and various moisturisers etc, then I am not going to replace them or I’ll replace them with 1 instead of the 3 that I had before. I hope that makes sense…. Obviously this is a process that will take a while but you can’t just become a minimalist overnight.
So I am only really touching on the surface of all of this but I hope that this is a useful starting point for those wanting to live a more minimalist life!
If you have any more tips or advice then let me know in the comments below! I’ll definitely be doing more of these posts in the future.
I think it’s fair to say that 2020 was not what anyone expected it to be… I wish to go back a year and warn my past self of what the year would behold because then it would have been a very different year. Gonna be honest, I actually had a pretty good year all… Read more “Here’s to 2021!”
Next up on this minimalism journey/series is digital minimalism which I honestly didn’t know was a thing up until about a month ago. When you think of minimalism you usually think of physical possessions that take up space, and the idea is that you want less objects but ones that add value to your life.… Read more “an introduction to digital minimalism | becoming a minimalist?”
As Secondhand September draws to a close, I wanted to share some of the amazing things I have picked up this month! So, a little backstory… before September I hadn’t been in a charity shop since March which for me has to be some kind of record. My birthday was a few days before lockdown… Read more “huge Brighton thrift haul!”