The Reality of Minimalism

“I know the least about minimalism. So I guess that means I know the most.”

The truth? I have struggled with minimalism. One of the most common experiences I have had while dejunking is the fear of, “I might need the this.” I love organizing, but I have a hard time with throwing things away.

Right after Charles and I got engaged my mom lost her home. It was the home I had grown up in my entire life. I was born in that home. My room was packed with stuff despite having been at college for a year. I think I kept everything since my junior high years. In a week’s time I had to sift through everything I owned and only keep the important items. If Charles didn’t sit there and convince me that what I was holding probably wasn’t necessary to keep, I would have left with triple the boxes I did. Instead, I left my childhood home with a gigantic pile of memorabilia in the middle of my room.

That was my first experience of mass dejunking and “minimalizing” my stuff. I was able to fit everything I owned into my compact car. A year of marriage later, Charles and I needed our entire box truck and his Ford Explorer to move all of our stuff. There was no way we were going to be able to keep all of it and live in a tiny home.

While we were building and waiting to move into the tiny home, We had an entire room of stuff we dreaded going through. It sat for months before we worked up the strength to go through it. The goal was to get rid of as much stuff as we could. It took days, but I felt so thrilled when we had loads to take to donation, or throw away. Dejunking felt like a high.

Now do Charles and I feel like we are masters at “minimalizing?” Not at all! Every couple weeks we have to throw away unnecessary things in our truck. We still have stuff at parent’s houses and a small storage unit full of memory boxes, furniture, and Christmas decorations. A minimalist lifestyle wasn’t natural for us, but it has given us the opportunity to recognize the important things we do have.

Clutter creates burdens in our life. It saps your energy and causes chaos. My mom losing her house was difficult to go through,, but within months my mom released lots of weight and her countenance looked lighter– as if the large house with tons of stuff was weighing her down, literally. This wasn’t the way that my family wanted her to create minimalism, but the benefits still showed.

I think there is merit in living a minimalist lifestyle. I fully support decluttering your home and finding joy in the simple amount of things you do have. Life isn’t about all the “stuff” anyway. It’s about experiences and relationships. Find a closet to declutter, experience the satisfaction of living with less.

Best regards,

Clarissa Mace

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