I’m keeping it short and sweet today because I’m on a mission… in a couple weeks I have a bunch of friends and family coming to stay, and I’ve just realized the house needs turning upside down. I am unable to stop myself walking into every room of the house with the eyes of a visitor, “They’ve been here two years and they still have unpacked boxes?”.
What was even in these boxes? Why do I have so much stuff I don’t need?! As someone that has moved house twice in three years, I know very well that we have way too much stuff. And since our last move two years ago we’ve only added to it further. So I’m here for a personal intervention… less stuff is on the immediate agenda; and to help I’m having a brief look at minimalism and what it means. It’s not procrastination, its research (cough, cough).
I’m not entirely sure when it happened, but at some point after having children I became a hoarder. The twins closet makeover required sorting of stuff before I could get stuck in, and this sparked a mission to declutter the house. I have made a new friends in the process; the charity clothes bin outside Safeway. Once I sorted a single box of high quality kids clothes to sell, I still had 12 trash bags busting with adult and kids clothes to get rid of. My new friend is a three minute drive away and it took me moments to dump the entire lot into its belly. Why on Earth didn’t I do this last month, last year? Heck… I even had two boxes of kids clothes that were shipped over from the UK over three years ago.
It’s very common for parents to hoard baby clothes, and it not only affects women:
“I was unbelievably frustrated. I didn’t understand his fixation with this giant bag of torn and stained clothes that no one was ever going to wear again.” (B Sanders, Romper.com)
Is Minimalism the answer?
Beyond the hoarding of adorable socks, I’m getting really fed up with tidying up… anyone else? The twins are a walking/running path of destruction these days. I feel like one of those vehicles that drives along the road on autopilot, picking up trash and cleaning surfaces behind them.
In reading the welcome page to The Minimalist Mom blog, I soon realized less stuff would really make my life less complicated. No DVD shelving for the twins to throw to the floor with one arm swoop, no cubbies stuffed with dozens of shoes that end up deposited in every corner of the house. No cupboards full of plastic plates bought for a picnic 2 years ago that get pulled out onto the floor every.single.day.
In dipping my toes into the world of minimalism, I came across the wise words of Joshua Becker, author of ‘The More of Less’ (affiliate link):
“Minimalism slows down life and frees us from this modern hysteria to live faster. It finds freedom to disengage. It seeks to keep only the essentials. It seeks to remove the frivolous and keep the significant. And in doing so, it values the intentional endeavors that add value to life.” (becomingminimalist.com)
That pretty much sums up what I want from life right now… less hysteria; more freedom; intentional endeavors. I’m hoping these words of wisdom may resonate for others, as they did for me; and I’m sure I will come back to this later and consider how all this decluttering affects the design and function of my home. So, without further ado… I’m keeping this post short because I have some more purging to do.
Update: Six weeks later I share what I’ve purged and what I’ve learned. Tips from my experience, and the experts on how to declutter and organize your life… read the post here.
June 30, 2017 at 10:43 am
I hear you! I totally found myself keeping lots of baby things when I first started out as a mom and it totally gets out of control. I don’t know if I could be a true minimalist, but I like the idea for sure! Happy decluttering 🙂
June 30, 2017 at 7:19 pm
Thanks Nicole! Trouble is… the more you do the more you find! ?
Corey | The Nostalgia Diaries
June 30, 2017 at 11:23 am
I’m totally in a purging phase right now. Too much clutter in my life!
June 30, 2017 at 7:20 pm
Yay! I’m loving how organized it makes me feel!
June 30, 2017 at 6:48 pm
I totally feel you, mama!! It is so hard… ESPECIALLY WITH TWINS. Like, there is just no time to declutter! I have been feeling the declutter bug like crazy lately, and have no idea how to find the time!
June 30, 2017 at 7:21 pm
It’s tough! The standard house work has had to slide this week to make time for the major decluttering! I’ll catch up eventually!
June 30, 2017 at 6:53 pm
Ugh!! Glad I’m not the only one! It is amazing how stuff just accumulates so fast!! Good luck with the purging!!
June 30, 2017 at 7:22 pm
Thanks, I honestly have no idea where it comes from! ?
June 30, 2017 at 8:52 pm
Thanks for sharing!!! I needed this in my life
June 30, 2017 at 10:05 pm
Haha. I think we could all do with a bit of a purge!
June 30, 2017 at 10:01 pm
I can SO relate to this post … spent the last two weeks going thru all the clothes that don’t fit my kids (we’re talking all the boxes in the basement, the storage lockers … everything. Washed, photographed it and listed it all on Facebook/Craigslist and eBay … made quite a bit of money so far and still have a lot to get rid of. It felt really good… My husband and I have moved twice in three years and have three (yes, three) storage lockers between us. Every week I make a couple of trips there, load my car with boxes, go thru it all and donate it, or list it and sell it. I’m making good progress. Determined to live a less cluttered life and have a more tidy home with less stuff to have to clean around!
June 30, 2017 at 10:08 pm
OMG, three lockers!! You’re doing good work mama! Stick with it and you’ll be back to a sensible load in no time!
July 1, 2017 at 6:46 am
Things get out of hand so quickly! We live in a smaller space and things get cluttered. I’m so motivated to do this!
July 1, 2017 at 7:59 am
A space space almost helps because you have no choice but to be a little more considered with what you own. Good luck with the decluttering!
July 1, 2017 at 7:26 am
I really need to go through my whole house too! It’s so easy to get overwhelmed by too much stuff!
July 1, 2017 at 7:58 am
Overwhelmed is exactly the word!
July 1, 2017 at 5:10 pm
I did 40 bags and 40 days and it lit a fire in decluttering my home. I have half of the house organized and I am more careful about purchasing unnecessary items. I am determined to live a less cluttered life! Great post!
July 1, 2017 at 6:07 pm
Amazing Rondra! Feeling totally inspired but the 40 bags and 40 days, I’ve promised myself something has to be decluttered everyday, whether a drawer, a box or just a corner in the garage!
Naya @ Lactivist in Louboutins
July 1, 2017 at 8:06 pm
This is so me! I need to declutter majorly, especially my kids’ clothes. That’s on my agenda to do this weekend. Here’s hoping the rest of this month and year brings me a less cluttered life!
July 1, 2017 at 8:10 pm
Hooray for the decluttering bug! Good luck!
Justine @ Little Dove
July 2, 2017 at 11:02 pm
Oh my gosh, I so need to go through everything in all our closets! The funny thing, I don’t even feel like we have that much “stuff”, but I still feel like we’re drowning in junk!
July 3, 2017 at 10:33 pm
Yep… lots and lots of totally useless stuff and not enough of what you actually need, sounds about right! ?
July 4, 2017 at 7:13 am
It took me a while to finally de-clutter my kids’ bedrooms. I was thinking, like “how did every thing get in here?” We’ve been donating our used clothes and put some up for sale in a garage sale.
July 4, 2017 at 2:05 pm
It requires some sorting doesn’t it… a mix of selling, giving away and chucking out! So.much.stuff.
July 7, 2017 at 6:51 am
Yes! I just started a minimalism blog and I’m like you, starting from the very beginning. It’s such a relief.
July 7, 2017 at 7:07 am
Oh fab! I’m heading over now to have a look! Good luck!