How to live minimally without giving away all your possessions

Decluttering

If you want to learn how to live minimally without going as far as purging all your possessions, this article is for you. Here are four baby steps toward a minimal lifestyle.

We want to live a more minimal lifestyle – it has been said many times by the vast majority of us, but in this consumer society, we seem to crave more and more stuff.  What instead if we decided to create more time, more experiences and more memories by moving to a more minimalist way of living. 

 As we reach the end of the school holidays, I can look back and divide my time clearly into two sets of memories:

  1.  The cleaning and organisation of stuff, kids toys, bills, a business to be run, dishes and a ridiculous never-ending pile of washing, the car trip to go to a movie or a trampoline park and…
  2. The exciting, belly laughter-filled memories when we left the house for the beach or to climb a hill or went outside to squirt each other with the hose – none of which cost money or made a huge mess to clean up but created lasting bonds which mean more than any plastic toy could.

These simple things in life remove a great deal of our often self-imposed stress and give us the time to enjoy the things that matter.

Suddenly becoming a minimalist, giving up all our possessions to live a simpler lifestyle is a pretty tough call in this day and age, but luckily for us, there is another way.

These are the small but significant steps to a more simple life:

Quality over quantity

Buy something if you need it or love it.  Invest in key pieces of furniture or art and if you aren’t sure, wait.  Unique and different pieces will stand the test of time, fashion pieces will come and go.

Get on-board with de-cluttering

Start with one room at a time, and begin with the rubbish bag.  My daughter's room is done when she is back at school straight after the school holidays, I evaluate what she doesn’t use (but still ends up on the bedroom floor), what is broken and what she has outgrown or no longer brings her happiness.  Whenever you take to a new organisation project around your home, begin with a trash bag. If you do this on a regular basis, you notice it is much easier to clear the clutter as there is less of it and your cleaning time is scaled down dramatically.   

De-clutter your digital life too

Delete apps you never use, unsubscribe from all the emails you never read, www.unroll.me is a fast and easy way to do this.  Record your favourite programmes so you can watch them advertisement free and get the bonus of not being bombarded with the need for more stuff. 

Go paperless; cloud storage is the most brilliant invention for being able to store any paperwork you need in a digital space that is easily searchable and accessible.  

 Do it in stages

 Start small, do one room or task at a time, you are out to create less stress, not more. 

For stuff you are not sure about, put it in self-storage or at the very least organise it into boxes and start with your wardrobes, they are the biggest hurdle.

Really learning how to live with a more minimal lifestyle starts with the word NO – NO to that extra piece of clothing, NO to extra commitments and YES to the things in life that truly matter.