Definition of minimalism
1: a style or technique (as in music, literature, or design) that is characterized by extreme spareness and simplicity.
Why I’m Starting.
Minimalism for me, is a coping technique. I want to change the way I am coping in my life right now. The first thing I learnt when doing my regular google-research on minimalism, was that you need a solid reason to begin with. This, of course, will be different for everyone. For some it may just be that you want to declutter slightly, some may want to save money. For me, my life coping techniques absolutely suck.
I wouldn’t say I still do this, as I am about 2 weeks into a more minimalist mindset. However, I used to be very materialistic based. Retail therapy, having…stuff, buying…things. You know what I mean. I used to think that having things, and buying things, made me feel fulfilled and happy. That feeling soon wears off, and you end up feeling cluttered and out of control, instead.
How I’m Starting.
I started with my bedroom. My bedroom is my safe place, for sure. I retreat here when things get tough, I’m here when I’m talking to my boyfriend, I’m here when things are happy and/or good, and I celebrate in here. My room is my space to explore and change as much as I want. It’s where I am able to use my full creative ability to create a space where my mind can fully relax.
I started by decluttering my room. As you can see, under my bed is not fully completed yet. It’s a work in progress. All of my drawers, wardrobe, things like that – they’re all finished. I used a couple of mental rules and questions when decluttering to keep me on track that I combined from various different corners of the internet.
- I allowed myself to keep 2 types of items only. I decided on keeping anything sentimental, as being sentimental is one personality trait of mine which I am extremely proud of. I also decided on keeping all of my stuffed animals. They have always been a comfort to me, and not only are some sentimental, they’re just good to have around.
- I asked myself 3 questions for every item I picked up. Do I need this item? Why do I need this item? Does this item bring me joy?
- If I didn’t need it, and it didn’t bring me joy, out it went. By ‘needing’ something, I more meant, have I used this in the past 6 months?
These things kept me focused on my goal and I was able to successfully declutter things like drawers, make-up, clothing, shoes, and surfaces.
The Different Steps
From watching things like the documentary “Minimalism: A Documentary About The Important Things” on Netflix, and Youtube Channels such as Rachel Aust, Sarah Therese – I’ve learnt there are very much different steps in this journey.
I think that it starts with decluttering for most people. It doesn’t matter what you declutter – it could be your brain, your technology, your house (or your room, like me). What it’s really about is clearing that space in your mind for a new beginning. Turning over a new leaf, as they say. After that, I’ve found that I’ve very much focused on deciding what I want to believe in. I’ve always classed myself as agnostic, religious wise. However, I am becoming more and more interested in Buddhism. I’ve done a lot of research so far, however that’s for a different blog post.
Another step of this journey for me, will be my diet and nutrition. I am looking into different ways to live healthier without sacrificing too much. I have IBS, so for me, cutting things out and adding things into my diet can cause me a lot of physical pain. I have to be very careful on how much stuff I’m eating, what I’m eating, etc. This one will take a lot more getting used to and trial and error, but I’m excited about it. I have never been a very physically healthy person, so this part will be extremely good for me.
Alongside this, I want to purge myself of technology. I’m not giving it all up forever, as that would mean no more blogging, and most importantly, no more boyfriend! My friends (mainly) and my boyfriend all live in America so for me to give up technology all together would quite frankly be stupid. I want to spend less time on my laptop and on my phone, and focus on the world around me. I’m no good at meditation, I find that my brain is just TOO busy for that. However, I am focusing on appreciating things more. I try to look out of my window or go outside for a good amount of time each day and just take in whatever is around me or what I can see.
I don’t know how long I’ll keep this up for, but if it keeps having the same effect on me that it is having now, I’m hoping for a long time. There are so many benefits of minimalism, and Buddhism, and eco-friendly living. I’m excited to really get stuck in and start doing my part to help myself, but also the environment and the world we live in. It’s so important to take care of yourself, and in return, you’re also taking care of the planet.