I’ve decided to try and adopt a more minimalist lifestyle but I think it’s making me obsessed! I’m trying to evaluate my progress as I’m wondering if I’m doing a good enough job so far or not. Since I’ve been experiencing some frustrations and feeling a bit obsessive about the whole thing, I’m taking a step back and want to share my progress with you.
What I love about minimalism is the push to simplify life. Most of us are way too busy for our own good these days. Too many commitments, too much clutter, too much to clean up, and too little relaxation can really bog us down. Stress kicks in, our health problems increase, and our happiness goes down.
I do not want to be weighed down. I’ve cut back on a lot of commitments and it’s definitely lightened my load. I gave up music lessons because I wasn’t enjoying myself, I stopped taking dance classes because they were too far away (and the teachers weren’t that great), and I stopped making plans with friends who never reciprocate back. No regrets there. I still feel busy all the time though so I definitely need to find more ways to be efficient and find more ways to simplify.
Over the weekend I filled four large paper bags with clothes, books, and some other random things that I took over to Goodwill. This is one of my obsessive rituals now. I always have an open bag in my closet where I can place things for donations any day, any time. Once I get 4-5 bags full, I make a trip to Goodwill. Sounds like minimalist progress right?
Even though I’ve made three trips this year alone, I don’t know why I’m obsessed with finding more things to get rid of. I already have empty shelves and extra space in the closets. My place is clean and doesn’t look cluttered, yet I feel addicted to keep minimalizing!
Change of Pace
Before I used to feel a great sense of accomplishment when I donated several bags. Lately, I’ve been feeling less satisfied though. Is it because I’ve finally started to run out of clutter?! Am I not feeling the same level of satisfaction because I’m at the point where if I continue to donate at the same pace I will start to lose conveniences and things I actually still enjoy? I think so!
I still think I can part ways with some more knick knacks, books, and maybe some more kitchen stuff but it’s definitely getting harder to find things to give away. I have no regrets over the things I’ve gotten rid of so far though, and I’m proud of that. I still want to continue to declutter, but it’s definitely going to be at a much slower pace now. The noticeable aftereffects are going to be much more subtle than before too so I can’t expect the same rush of satisfaction as when I first started.
I loved to collect things growing up. Most I’ve long since parted with like my Troll doll collection, but a few big ones remain. I have a huge collection of Barbie dolls, accessories, and dollhouse furniture at my mom’s house. And then I have two large collections of coins and stamps at my own. Even though none of it’s worth much money, I’ve hung on to mostly because of sentimental reasons.
Although I still enjoy sitting down and looking through everything, I probably only do that once a year. That’s way beyond my use it or lose it clutter rule of 3 months. Right now I have the space to store them, but I am starting to wonder if I should start parting ways with at least portions of the collections. I’ve decided that as long as I still keep them I’m going to take them out and enjoy them at least 3-4 times a year.
Getting Past What’s Not Mine
Another thing I’ve struggled with more lately as I’ve started to run out of my own things to give away, is looking past my husband’s things. It’s SO tempting to raid his side of the closet and bag up things I think he can part with! But I’m smart enough not to do that without asking first.
I do give my husband credit though as he’s given away CDs, books, and clothes of his own this year and last, and has been a great sport. I guess I’m tempted to raid his things to get the same rush I used to get early on when I was clearing out big spaces of my own, plus it’s SO much easier finding things to give away when they belong to someone else. 🙂
After putting my thoughts down, I think I’m still on the right track of moving towards a minimalist lifestyle. But I think I’m at a stage now where I need to focus less on decluttering objects, and more on decluttering my thoughts and habits.
I want to continue pouring my obsessive energy into becoming more minimalist so I can have more and more time to enjoy the things I love. Simplifying life is a very freeing feeling and I think I’m hooked!
Untemplaters, have you ever felt obsessed about decluttering and trying to achieve a minimalist lifestyle? What are your thoughts on simplifying life?