“Simplicity, clarity, singleness: These are the attributes that give our lives power and vividness and joy as they are also the marks of great art.” —Richard Holloway
So what is a minimalistic lifestyle anyway? Well essentially it is trying to live with only the things we really need. And why might you want to live a minimalistic lifestyle?
Well what you mightn’t know is minimalism isn’t just about living without unnecessary things, it is also about banishing clutter and restoring a sense of order to your world which can actually help you to manage stress and boost your health.
We’ve all been there. Bills and junk mail are piling up on your kitchen bench, dirty clothes are spilling out of the clothes basket onto your bathroom floor, and let’s not even talk about the state of your spare room right now! Anyone else use their spare bed as a great place for your clothes to live? At some point or another, this has likely been your home. (If not, kudos.) What you mightn’t know is that this disarray can mess with your mental health.
I’m sure you’ve made the connection that if your home, car, and office space feel cluttered and disorganised you probably have a tendency to feel overwhelmed and stressed as if we don’t even know where to start. Research suggests that when our space feels put together and tranquil, we feel more tranquil. Research has also linked a tidier home to healthier habits like exercising and making better food choices. Good enough reason to make the switch? Yeah we think so too.
In a world where we are bombarded with tactful marketing techniques and exclusive email offers, BOGO sales and flash sales it’s understandably easy to get wrapped up in buying things that you don’t necessarily need. I’m sure you can relate to having an excess of everything you could possibly need in your closet. Most probably half of what you own still has tags on it for that ‘one perfect’ occasion you have been saving to wear it to. That was most likely over 5 years ago now and you no longer fit into it, so now it is your “I will fit back into that one day goal dress”.
Have you ever considered trying to live a life with less and not contributing to our over consumerism problem? If you haven’t considered downsizing and decluttering maybe you could experience a big difference in your overall happiness just like others report when following a minimalistic lifestyle too.
Not sure where to start? No fear beauty, we’ve got some easy tips for you below. And as always you know we are massive advocates for slow shifts in change rather than radical unsustainable change. So, pick one thing and make small change progressively.
Quantity vs QualityWhen you’re making a buying decision, always think about quantity versus quality. Quantity means you’re buying something because it’s cheap or replaceable, and you can buy a lot of it for a little. Quality means you’re buying something that will probably cost you more at the beginning but will last you much longer. It’s also really great to consider other factors when making a purchase, such as where it was made and how it was made. Do they support eco friendly practices? Do they use quality locally made materials and ingredients or are they the cheapest of quality so that they cost less? A great example I always remember growing up my step mother was a chronic hoarder. I think she even had 4 broken vacuum cleaners on the go at one stage. Instead of spending a little bit extra and buying a high quality machine she would buy the latest cheap machine, whatever was on sale so that she felt like she was getting a deal and of course 3 months tops, it would blow up like clock work. I knew when I left school (ok that’s over 18 years ago now for those keeping score) that I’d rather go without things until I could save up and afford the highest quality of whatever it was that I wanted. I used to borrow the neighbours vacuum until I could afford the one I wanted (Back then Dyson’s were the bees knees, just like now!). Might sound simple but it’s a great way to think about things before buying them.
One-Time Use ItemsBuying something for one specific purpose can end up not only costing you money but also impact heavily on our Environment and you guys know how much we think that stinks! It’s that “Maybe one day I’ll need that thing” syndrome, and realistically you never end up using it and it just clutters up your space. Solution, donate your non-essentials and move on.
1 In, 1 OutWe LOVE this rule! A girlfriend introduced me to this concept about 10 years ago and it has changed my whole buying habits! This is simply where any time you buy something new for your wardrobe (or any item in your home), you get rid of one item in your wardrobe (or home) to give away. This is fantastic to keeping clutter to a minimum but also it really forces you to be mindful when making purchases.
Get Rid of DuplicatesThe more doubles, triples, quadruples of items that you have, the more clutter you have to deal with. We’re big proponents of this, and it’s something we’re really mindful of on a daily basis. We often come across duplicates and extras of things, so we try and centralise everything and get rid of the ones that aren’t great. Think about things like wine and bottle openers, scissors, pens, screwdrivers… all that kind of stuff. If you have duplicates, pick the best, and get rid of the rest!
If you want to start living with less, you have to bring less into your home, period. So, when you’re out there picking items up, I know it’s easy to get sucked into a BOGO, or a sale, or a triple saver deal, but stop and really consider what it is that you’re bringing into your home. Do you really need all of that stuff? Most probably not.
These are just a few basic principles to get you started on your minimalist journey. And in the coming weeks we are going to have even more awesome tips coming your way on how to minimise items in different areas of your home, starting in your wardrobe. Yes ladies, be ready! If you have an outfit you haven’t worn in 8 months and you’re not pregnant, it’s time to let that shiz go!!
Talk soon, and happy decluttering babes xx