I want to be a minimalist, so I spend a lot of time rummaging through my “stuff” to see what I can part with. Each time I go through a box, I usually eliminate a few items. My daughter asks me why don’t I just get rid of the whole box now, after all, I only look at the “stuff” when I feel a need to de-clutter. The answer…. it is too painful to let go all at once!! I know it doesn’t make sense, but isn’t that the way it goes?
Not only does minimalism include de-cluttering, but mainly it is a lifestyle and thought process. We need to detach from “stuff” and focus our energy on experiences that are worthwhile in life. We don’t need to fill our lives with a bunch of knick knacks, electronics, furniture, etc that we have to pay for and maintain. So, one must get to a point where there is no more de-cluttering. Only buy when something needs to be replaced or what is truly necessary.
I love having open space and room to breath in my home. Being a minimalist includes being cautious of what is brought into one’s life. It is so fun to go to a sale and buy, buy, buy, after all, it’s cheap and I can use it. Then, comes the reality, did I really need this?, the tags are still on it. Now, I have to store it….. my drawers, walls, and shelves are already full. If I decide to dispose of it, I have to make an effort to find somewhere for the item to go. More of my time spent on this item.
Since I struggle somewhat on becoming a minimalist, I have accumulated a list of what I keep in mind when contemplating a purchase and to keep my minimalism intact.
1. Is this necessary?
2. Do I love it?
3. What else am I giving up?
4. Where will it go?
5. Will something else work?
6. Will this get me to my goal?
7. What is the total cost?
8. Am I buying what I need or for my fantasy life?
9. Am I willing to fill my immediate wants and compromise my long-term goals?
10. Is this the best decision?
11. What will I gain/lose from this purchase?
I know that this is a lot to think about with every purchase, but mainly just think of what the consequenses are of the purchase. Do I really need it, this is the main question. If I just want it because it’s cute, I like it, this is neat/cool, then most likely I don’t need it. I like a lot of things and I can’t buy them all.
Minimalism is not only cleaning out of what you already have, it is maintaining that lifestyle. It is difficult in our society when buying and having seem to defines one’s life.
Personally, I would rather put my energy into meaningful activities and spend less time shopping and maintaining “stuff”!!