Growing up, I honestly did not want much. I was not one to ask my parent for this and that and more. Often am unsure if it was just me as a personality or something they did or said that made me that way. I do remember having everything I enjoyed. For example, we had a Sharp double cassette player where I played the tapes my uncles brought over [ English music], books [mainly brought by uncles and my athai added to the pile as well], uniforms, shoes, and clothes for daily routines.
Let me ask you this – if you were to open your cupboards, are you happy with the number of things you own? Imagine walking into a room, kitchen or dressing room- would you be overwhelmed with what’s there or smile knowing you have just what you need? Do you find it easy or difficult to pick out clothes to wear when planning an outing? Now, am not saying I have just 5 tops and 4 pants, I do have more than that, but my wardrobe is sorted based on purpose – stuff that I wear at home or for walks, and others that I wear when stepping out. Plus all that’s in my cupboard fit me and if any don’t, or are torn, they are immediately given away or tossed out. [This was easy for me cos I have always been a big plus size girl, and so the number of options I had in clothing was limited, though there are far available more now]
My transition towards becoming a minimalist started in 2010…
How did it all start for me? Well, I slowly began to realise the value of having things that matter and giving away the excess. This applied to everything but books, and that was the last category I got to. This happened in 2015 when I was moving back into my grandparents’ house [after grandpa passed away] from the apartment [I had been living alone for a few years]. The 2nd bedroom was used as a reading room, with rooms spread out on the floor. I had over 300 books and just looking at them had me overwhelmed. I had read them all and knew I wasn’t going to re-read them. From there, I got in touch with people, and gave them all away, keeping only 50- 60 books, which have been weaned down to about 20-25 books today!
When I moved back to Grandma’s place, I moved my stuff out of the apartment in 3 garbage bags, 5ft tall ones. 1 for the kitchen, 1 for clothes, toiletries, papers, and books. the 3rd one had knick-knacks – stationery, home decor stuff, etc. Some of the furniture I sold – the dining table, the coffee table and a few lampshades. Brought the sofa back to my grandparents’ house cos I had taken it from there.
Infact, it got to a point where I would cringe at the thought of someone sending me something, invariably around the birthday. Even if I told them I didn’t need/want anything, they would still feel obligated to send a gift and sometimes the gift would not have a purpose~ Sigh!
Would you like to know how to become a minimalist?
Well, if you ask me – becoming a minimalist involves simplifying your life. This is done by reducing the amount of stuff you own and focusing on what’s truly important to you.
Here are some steps you can take to become a minimalist:
- Identify your values and priorities: Before you start decluttering, take some time to reflect on what’s truly important to you. This will help you determine what items are necessary and which ones can be let go. Time to create a simple and streamlined living space. Choose furniture and decor that serve a purpose and keep your home free of unnecessary clutter.
- Declutter your space: Go through your belongings and decide which items you use regularly, which ones you haven’t used in a while, and which ones you can do without. Be honest with yourself and remember that less is often more.
- Limit your spending: Adopt a “less is more” mindset when it comes to shopping. Only buy what you need and avoid impulse purchases.
- Embrace experiences over possessions: Focus on experiences and memories rather than material possessions. This can help you live a more fulfilling life and reduce your reliance on things. Embrace the idea of living with less. Instead of constantly acquiring new things, make a conscious effort to buy only what you need and avoid impulse purchases.
- Practice mindfulness and gratitude: Appreciate what you have and be content with it. Gratitude can help you feel more satisfied with your life and reduce your desire for more things.
- Embrace minimalism in other areas of your life: Minimalism can extend beyond your physical possessions. You might consider simplifying your schedule, reducing your screen time, or focusing on relationships that truly matter.
When you start living as a minimalist, you are happy just having things you use, and that which serves a purpose. For me, it is all about living a simple meaningful life. This does not mean I deprive myself of joys or don’t buy fun stuff, I do, but then again there is a lot of thought that goes into it. For eg, I had a pair of Converse shoes on which I had a No tie lace which was colourful and I loved it. Similarly, other things I indulge in are fancy undergarments and quirky socks.
Remember, becoming a minimalist is a personal journey and doesn’t have to happen overnight. Start with small steps and gradually incorporate minimalism into your life. Leaving you with an interesting article on Minimalism..