I am a big fan of YouTube. Organization and decluttering videos, in particular. Something about watching those kinds of videos just calms me (can you tell I’m a Type A personality yet?).
One day I was on YouTube watching videos when I came across a minimalism video, and this may sound sort of dramatic- but it changed my life.
Minimalism, in short, is intentional living with less. Basically you’re supposed to “only have things in your life that spark joy”. So for instance, you go through your closet and get rid of things that you don’t like, haven’t worn in forever, or that don’t fit you anymore. And you basically do that with the rest of your life as well. You declutter your life- and if you don’t need it or love it, you let it go. I’m sure some of you are thinking that this concept sounds crazy, and to be honest some people do take minimalism to an extreme level. However…
To me, minimalism is open organized spaces, owning possessions with purpose, and intentional living.
Open organized spaces have always been appealing to me, maybe that’s why I was drawn to minimalism from the beginning. I love rummaging through things and getting rid of what I no longer use. I enjoy donating it and giving it a new life, or selling it and making some cash! Knowing I have just what I need, and that I don’t have so much that I have to cram things into spaces… that brings me joy.
Owning possessions with purpose means not having a bunch of useless junk. Everything I own is relevant to me. Since I’ve started my minimalist journey I’ve probably purged 60% of my possessions. I don’t own multiples of things, and if it’s something I hadn’t used in the past year- I got rid of it. If I could go a year without noticing it, it obviously wasn’t very important to me. Another thing I did was I went though my memory box and scanned special notes and cards onto my computer. I got rid of the hard copies so that I had more space, but they were still safe on my hard drive. I still have all of mine and Troy’s letters and cards in a separate box. I will always keep those hard copies- but it sparks joy in me, so I think it’s okay.
Finally I started spending intentionally. I don’t just “go shopping” anymore. When I go to the store I go with a list and a purpose. As of right now I own everything that I want and need. If I got a hole in my leggings and needed a new pair, then I would go searching for some… But I’m not going to go out shopping to buy something I already have, or go shopping without a purpose and end up buying something I didn’t even need to begin with. This rule of thumb has saved me tons of money, and has helped me become more responsible with my spending.
In addition to material items, I started to think about relationships in my life, what I am viewing and listening to, social media, and even how I spend my free time. I asked myself if those things making me happy or weighing me down? Depending on my answered I either held on to them or let go.
These three rules of thumb are what minimalism means to me. Everyone has a different journey and we all take it at our own pace. My minimalism journey has taught me that when I leave this life, my possessions are not going with me. I have learned the value of experiences and memories over material things. And most importantly, I have learned to be more grateful.
I am happy with what I have. I have enough. I am enough.
“Minimalism is living with what you need and love, and that’s it.” -The Minimalists