I have a growing in interest in the minimalism movement, which probably began when I read Marie Kondo’s book, The Life-Changing Magic of Tidying Up. In that spirit, I will try to make this a minimalist post. Though I suppose if it were haiku, it would be even more artfully minimalist (a goal for a future post).
Brooke Castillo has had a good amount to say about minimalism as well, and her podcast episode on minimalism is one I have enjoyed multiple times because it appeals to me on so many levels. Full disclosure: if you visit me my home, you will see that minimalism is an aspiration but not yet a lifestyle for me. I include my empty closet and my “outside the closet” photos in full disclosure here. Brooke describes a year-long trip that she took with her family in which they sold everything they owned, except what would fit into a foot locker and what they could take in their van. “Excess stuff weighs us down and causes us to have to make too many decisions.” (summarized) I really identify with this, as I think unnecessary clutter creates distractions that make us feel more busy than we actually are. In losing ~16 pounds this past year, I feel that process required me to de-clutter some of the old ideas in my mind.
I spent a lot of time this Spring and Summer going through the initial stages of the KonMari method, primarily working on the clothing portion of that de-cluttering process. I did not follow her exact process but instead started by taking everything out of my closet on April 9th and only putting back what sparks joy. I still have much to do in order to make progress toward this goal. One thing that I noticed was that I suffered much less decision fatigue while trying to get dressed in the morning. Last year I spent time trying to upgrade my wardrobe because I wanted to dress for the “next level” in my corporate job, and I had a lot of presentations to give, so I wanted to look sharp. This year, I find that I am donating many items, because I realize certain items I acquired do not fit my true style or my personality.
KonMari describes our need to hang onto things as arising from an attachment to the past or a fear of the future. Amen, sister. I hope to return to this down-sizing and de-cluttering of so many things I no longer need, and are in fact weighing me down in indecision. I live an abundant life and do not need to keep things that no longer serve me. By letting go of my past and realizing I have limited control over my future, I have experienced so much more freedom to live a good life. It is a process, but one that is worth pursuing. I will return to this process again now that the weather is getting brisk again and I am less tempted by the outdoors to neglect the inner spaces.
May you, my faithful reader, minimize what does not work in your life, so you have abundant space for what brings you joy.