It’s been nearly a year now since I bought my new house and purged a lot of stuff for my big move. Last year was pretty stressful getting ready for a big garage sale but I got rid of so much stuff! Looking around the house lately I’ve begun noticing several things that I could get rid of and the idea of holding another yard sale came to mind. It’s funny how stuff continues to creep back into the house despite my best efforts.
I’ve stopped buying quilting fabric, tools, notions, patterns, books, thread…. unless I really have a specific project in mind and can’t find it in my studio already. Most of the items I’ve purchased recently are wedding related.
The other thing I’ve been working on minimizing is my time on social media platforms that don’t directly contribute to me being more productive overall. Anything that has become a time-sink (Facebook browsing, Pinterest, Instagram) I’m working hard to phase that out and only go on there to post or comment on friends posts. Spending more time with loved ones when I’m present with them and less on my phone is becoming easier and easier each day.
John and I went to Bandit Coffee Shop in St. Petersburg to attend the Minimalist Meetup and they had one of The Minimalists there to speak with us and answer lots of questions. Sitting there with a group of people that believe in this movement made me realize – everyone finds minimalism when they need it. It’s not something you can convert someone to or convince them it’s great just by telling them about it. I found minimalism during a time of my life when everything felt out of control, chaotic and I was wildly unhappy with everything I had. Minimalism isn’t about living with nothing or living in a tiny house; though, for some people that may be the case. It’s about maximizing our time with our family, friends and loved ones by spending less time and money on things we don’t need. It’s also about spending less time and frustration on relationships that aren’t worthwhile and are sucking you dry. For a lot of people I think that is the more difficult part to implement.
Baby steps though! That brings me to my reason for posting this. November is a new month and a great time to begin a fun minimalism challenge if you’re up for it! Here’s how it works:
- Each day of the month you donate, sell or trash the number of items for that date. Day one = one item. Day two = two items and so on.
- If you participate the entire month of November you will have eliminated 465 items from your household!
- Challenge a loved one that you live with you can double that number.
- This challenge is always more fun with friends and you can come up with a fun prize at the end for whoever sticks with it the longest.
Tips for deciding whether to keep something or not:
- Think about the last time you used or wore that item. When do you plan on using it again?
- Consider making a 180 day rule. If you haven’t used it in 180 days and you don’t plan on using it in the next 180 perhaps it’s time to let go.
- Those “Just in case” items that keep sticking around? If it can be replaced in 20 minutes for less than $20 purge it. (The Minimalists have a great blog about it and how it helped them immensely even when traveling.)
Keep Track of Your Progress
- Post daily updates on Instagram, Facebook or Twitter. At the end of the month you can see all of your hard work! Instagram Hashtags: #minimalismchallenge, #30dayminimalismchallenge
Will you join me?