Over the years, Hub and I have got very good at doing ‘life laundry’ – filleting out stuff we no longer need or want to give us both head space and actual space.
It is not surprising then that I very much enjoyed listening to a reading of The Minimalists’ book of essays before Christmas. This is a collection of thoughts from Joshua Fields Millburn and Ryan Nicodemus on ways to live a more intentional life.
One idea I thought it would be fun to have a go at is their Minimalism Game. On the first of the month, you pick one item to get rid of; on the second, two items etc.
Now, I did not have a mass of things just lying around to be swept up – my last clear-out was just before the holidays, when I donated a load of stuff (books, clothes, DVDs, shoes etc) to the British Heart Foundation…
Nevertheless, it seemed like a good way to start the year.
I must admit that I have not followed the Game to the letter – specifically, I have not jettisoned each day’s items on the day itself. I figure that as long as I am working within the spirit of the Game, that’s ok. I am 100% confident that the items I have identified will actually leave the apartment.
So, it’s 8 January – how have I got on so far?
By now, I should have found 36 items. In fact, I am a day ahead, because I have got 45 things to go out:
Day 1: a large box full of out of date medicines and unused/unwanted toiletries;
Day 2: two books I enjoyed reading last year but am not likely to read again;
Day 3: three different bags/cases which are all very serviceable but which we don’t use;
Day 4: four assorted items to be donated, found while sorting out the stuff for Day One’s box;
Day 5: five black tops with necklines that I don’t like;
Day 6: six cake forks which we never use because they are for right-handed use and Hub is left-handed;
Day 7: seven pink and purple items (more tops, an evening bag, and a glass ashtray which belonged to by Nan – I’ve kept this for a long time because of the association with her, but have realised that I already have the memories and don’t need this object to invoke them);
Day 8: eight dishcloths we don’t need because we have plenty more;
Day 9: nine plastic shoe boxes, now empty because of my pre-Christmas sort-out.
Here’s what all this stuff looks like. I am very happy that we will no longer have to store this table-full of stuff we don’t need and/or want….
By the way, you may have spotted that there are, in fact, two lots of three items: the cases, and also three pink make-up bags. I obviously miscounted when I was putting everything out, so there’s a bonus three things to go with everything else.
If I manage to get to the end of the month, I will have found a total of 496 things to get rid of. I’m not sure whether I’ll be able to manage that, but hey, let’s just see how things go! 🙂