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Has anyone become or is in the process of becoming minimalist?

(8 Posts)
rackhampearl Fri 17-Mar-17 20:47:58

Just what the title says really. I do have lots and lots of stuff but I feel drawn to the minimalist lifestyle. I struggle with anxiety and worry about all the stuff I have all the time. I just want to hear about other people's experiences with minimalism. If it's improved your life, made you happier? Etc. smile

jasmine1979 Wed 22-Mar-17 18:54:39

Yes! I started this just over a year ago. I suffer really badly from anxiety and have found that this approach to life has massively helped me. I have gradually narrowed down all my items and will say that at one stage I found the process quite addictive which although meant I got a lot done is also something to watch out for!.
I started off just culling my possessions Marie Kondo style, but found that the general thought process leeched into other areas of my life and has led to me just feeling far more content in my life. “Happy with my lot” so to speak.
I found that watching youtube videos on minimalism really helped to inspire me. There are loads of them out there and I found it so refreshing to watch people talking about working on the things that are really important in life instead of striving towards materialistic things. You might have to hunt about a bit to find youtubers that you feel you can connect to but it definitely helped me.
Is there anything else you want to know? Just ask away. smile

rackhampearl Thu 23-Mar-17 12:52:13

Hey jasmine

Thanks for your reply to my thread! Was beginning think I was going mad! Regardless, I started anyway. Have you heard of the 40bagsfor40days social media experiment? The goal is to donate, bin or sell 40 bags of clutter from your home for the next 40 days, even if it's a bag of old paperwork. Anywayyy, I'm on Day 3 and I've got to say it's really helping my anxiety. I'm throwing out things I haven't used in years but for some reason didn't want to part with. I'm feeling pretty good. The only issue is, I have a DH who is abit of a hoarder so while I'm cutting down on my possessions I haven't managed to convince him yet. Which is fine, obviously. But I do want to approach minimalism as a proper lifestyle. Questions, questions. Have you faced any issues since you started your journey? I don't know, got rid of something that you regret? Are you genuinely more happier? Has it save you money? How much has it improved your anxiety? TIA

jasmine1979 Wed 29-Mar-17 15:01:08

Hi, sorry it's taken so long to reply!
Ah, I can completely sympathise with the DH issue. I have one that is the same. I don't think he will ever be fully on board with the journey in the same way that I am. He hoards like crazy, and still really seems to place a high value on what I call just "stuff". smile Every new item he gets, he will keep the old one all boxed up in original packaging and in pristine condition. (phones for example!)
I do feel like I've made some progress with him in the last few weeks though. He couldn't shut his cupboard as it was so rammed with things he doesn't use (or will slim back into!) He gets concerned about how it is a waste of money to get rid of things, but once I explained that the money had been wasted long ago and it was actually more wasteful to keep all this stuff lying around causing him stress he seemed to kind of get it and had a big clearing out session. I think the problem is, it really does have to come from them at the end of the day. He did appreciate me helping him though and picking up items for him and quizzing him on when he last used it etc.
We have had to compromise on quite a few things. For example he has a massive dvd collection in the living room. It takes up loads of space, and he never watches any of them! We sold any that were worth money, and the rest we put into a dvd folder and stored the cases up in the loft.
When I first started, I did something very similar to the 40 bags experiment. I found it quite addictive and managed to get far more than the required amount of bags. I realised as well that I had been holding onto a lot of things with the intention of one day selling them on ebay etc, and it was never going to happen. I donated massive amounts of sometimes brand new really good items to charity shops. I can honestly say though that the relief in giving that stuff away was huge, and I don't regret any of it.
Books were also a huge thing that I had been keeping hold of. I still keep one large bookcase in my living room,but they are books that truly mean something to me like special editions etc. Basic paperbacks etc are always passed straight on now after reading.

I would say that it has certainly saved me money. There are so many things that I just no longer buy or stock up on because I just think to myself that I would rather have the clean space. New knick nacks for the home for example aren't needed because I already have the things that I love. I used to buy loads of toiletries shampoos etc as loved trying out new things. I now far prefer to just have one shampoo I'm using at a time. I know to a lot of people that is common,but for me it was a type of item that I clearly hoarded to a degree and needed to address it. I realised I didn't need 20 different mascaras. One would actually do. The same applies to my food cupboards. I don't replace something now unless what I am using has actually run out. I want to spend money on experiences and memories. Not possessions that will mean very little to me in several years. It was something I noticed when doing all my clearing out. So many things I had bought over time, and once they had gone, I didn't miss them even a little bit. In fact the only thing I ever had a regret about throwing away was a tin of paint! I loved the colour and would have liked it for some touch ups on my wall. It's been discontinued now though. smile It's not the end of the world though. I'll be able to find a similar one elsewhere I'm sure.

I think it's really helped my anxiety. I really hadn't expected it to have such a calming effect. One of the ways that my anxiety worked was that I was constantly tidying, straightning things out and wanting things to look a certain way in my home when I was really stressed. Once I'd removed a lot of those things to make the home easier to care for it really helped. I was able to focus on other more important things like myself instead.
Paperwork was one of my biggest things I think in helping my anxiety. Getting rid of most of it and scanning what I might one day need really helped me as I would often feel so overwhelmed by it all and it would just build up. Even though it was put away and filed etc I still knew it was there and it's lovely now to open a drawer and see the thing I want straight away.

A really easy tip for when you don't feel like physically getting rid of lots of stuff is making sure you unsubscribe to any email newsletters that you might get from companies. I was shocked to realise just how much rubbish was being sent to me each day. Keeping my inbox clean really helped me a lot. It also helps with the saving money aspect and there isn't the temptation there each day of special offers etc.

Sorry, if this has been a bit rambly! Am sure I've missed out loads of stuff. Are there any types if items inparticular that you think you hoard or are finding it hard to get rid of? I really found that knowing someone else could get pleasure from my stuff helped a lot with any guilt I had in getting rid of stuff.

itsacatastrophe Mon 01-May-17 12:46:56

You are probably better off posting in housekeeping or chat. Minimalism is an alternative ethical living to what people might imagine ethical living to be. Not sure that makes sense but anyhoo, minimalist here. Realised I have been minimalist for years without ever having a name for it. Marie Kondo's book isn't about minimalism but many find it's a good place to start and leads on to minimalism. Also the minimalism film on Netflix is worth a watch. There are loads of podcasts and Facebook groups for support but a lot of the groups are more about decluttering then intentionally living with less.
Minimalism is amazing and so freeing. Just wish DH and the DC were more on board (I live with hoarders. Dc(5) insists on keeping his used plasters 🤢 never mind every top he's ever been given)

dilapidated Tue 02-May-17 18:04:21

I am happier when I don't have too much stuff around me.

The feeling of only having what I need is addictive.

Dp is a bit of a hoarder and has kept things going back to his school years which just gets moved from loft to loft.

I'm about to buy him the book 'stuffocation'

ChampagneCommunist Sat 20-May-17 07:51:33

I'm so glad others mentioned how it helps their anxiety- me to!

I sometimes feel so overwhelmed by "stuff", but I'm working with the KM method & also looking a plastic free too & it helps

stargirl1701 Sat 20-May-17 07:57:39

Not really minimalism but we are working towards zero waste. I feel released by not having to keep decades old crap but just donate stuff I never use. Not buying new stuff is the challenge!

http://www.zerowastehome.com

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