If you guys saw this post, then you know during the month of May we challenged ourselves to simplify even more by not making any extra purchases and continuing to get rid of items around the home. Today I’m sharing how we did and some of our takeaways!
I wish I had more time for the “getting rid of” portion, but we did pretty well not buying any unnecessary items! I did do a major overhaul of my clothes closet though—something I’ve been meaning to do! You can see that post and all my tips here. By narrowing down my wardrobe and not purchasing any clothing this month, it gave me time and space to see what I have, live with it and figure out what I really need. So far I purchased some underclothing because I realized quickly that was severely lacking!
Okay, so here are some of my takeaways:
-Living with what you have, because you probably already have enough. Once I stopped buying new things, I began searching my home for things I needed, and even using things in alternate ways. I also began to realize I don’t really NEED as much as I think.
-Being grateful and proud of what you own. Instead of buying the newest and latest (which eventually “needs” to be replaced with the “newest and latest”), I began to see what we already own in a new light. We chose the things in our home for a reason, and it feels good to acknowledge that and be grateful.
-Finding positive distractions when feeling the need to purchase. Sometimes we shop out of boredom, or sadness…or hunger or happiness or..the list goes on! We’ve always been somewhat active and definitely more into experiences than things, but I’ve been trying to focus on that even more so. Instead of shopping we go to the beach, head out for coffee, for a long walk on the trail or play outside in our backyard. So much more satisfying than shopping!
-Mindful purchasing. I now put SO much thought into things before I buy them. Like, how much will I wear this…how long will this last…do I really need it…is it fair trade/am I contributing to a small business…etc. Not everything has to be a NEED but when you really stop to think about something and sleep on it, many times you will realize you can do with out it. And other times, you can’t stop thinking about it! Then that probably means it’s a go :)
-Noticing what is causing clutter in your home and how you can rectify that. Is it due to a lack of organizational storage? Are you buying new items constantly to replace misplaced items? Are you not getting rid of old/expired items before you purchase new (think makeup and bath items). Are you storing instead of disposing of items you no longer have a need for, are broken, etc.?
-Rethinking storage. I told Dan I don’t ever want to use our attic, because if we are it means we are keeping too many items! Sometimes we tend to store items we don’t feel like dealing with at the moment, but this puts us on the fast track to hoarding! haha. It’s helpful to really put thought into things before storing them— will I really be using this in the future? Is there someone else who can use this item right now?
-Recognizing the wonderful feeling of simplification. It feels SO freeing! To not have that need to keep up and always buy new new new and the space that gives you mentally and physically is satisfying! With less clutter, less meaningless stuff and less choices (in terms of clothing), it has given me back time and space.
-Realizing that getting rid of things can be hard, but once it’s gone you often forget about it. I’ve realized that things I was on the fence about getting rid of, once I put it in a box to be donated I forgot about that item and came to the conclusion I obviously didn’t have any sort of real need or want for it.
I already see this simplification habit sinking in. It has actually become a bit addicting once I realized how great it feels!
Share your relationship with simple living! I’d love to hear any tips or comments you have on the topic :)