If you’ve been following the recent debate, you’ll know that Marie Kondo has sparked some feelings regarding books… I wanted to jump in and share my thoughts on the debacle.
Spoiler alert: I’m on the “it’s okay to get rid of books” camp.
Spoiler alert: I’m on the “it’s okay to get rid of books” camp.
Some thoughts on how a minimalist approach to clothes and makeup helps me save time. Less time spent on a busy morning routine = one happy girl.
Just wanted to sit down and share some thoughts on settling and why I won’t settle for good enough when it comes to stuff. It’s a minimalist win for me.
It’s a little more than 3 years since I decided to adopt a simpler, more minimal approach to life and consumption. I was already interested in green initiatives, but, naturally, this led to an increased interest in low waste, DIY, conscious consumerism, curated collections, and introspection. Like many, I started with a copy of Marie Kondo’s Life-changing Magic of Tidying Up and took off from there. The book really was life-changing, altering my philosophy on home, spending, and happiness in general. My initial goal in reading the book was to inspire my mom to change some of her own habits and overcome her fear of letting go, what I found was a new outlook that resulted in a happier, simpler me.
I filmed a few videos describing my early experience with “sparking joy” (I’ll be restarting that that series soon, re-titled “minimalist transitions”), but here are 5 things that facilitated the process and/or inspired me to think about what I consume.
This is the book that started it all for me. I borrowed it from my library and learned so much, I wanted to share it with everyone. I still apply KonMari’s philosophy and strive to surround myself with things that spark joy — in life, work, and home.
I have a coffee habit, and while I’m still working on minimizing my use of disposables, this was a start. KeepCup has since become the cup du jour among the cool kids.
I am not a cool kid, just a posh nerd.
I have two of these – the classic in red and the mini in brick. I work at a university and I have a lot to carry. I also travel for work and love Swedish design. These bags hold EVERYTHING and don’t make my back hurt (joy all around); they also helped me re-evaluate what I carry, and learn that I value comfort and practicality above all. I wear a Kanken on most days and have gotten sooo much use out of them. Fun fact, I used my amazon reward points to purchase both of them. I paid $0 for each.
Lesson: use those credit rewards!
I’ve talked about these before (here, here, here, and here). These were the 1st big, well-researched fashion purchase I made after re-evaluating my spending and shopping habits. Purchasing a pair of $175 shoes is an investment and not one I made lightly. This purchase forced me to re-evaluate my relationship with fashion, and appreciate the quality and durability of well-made shoes. Two years on, my first pair is still one of my most-worn items.
Another happy side-effect, I was able to let go of all the shoes that made my feet hurt. I reach for tieks whenever I’m not wearing my Lotta’s (another purchase made for comfort and durability).
Note: I have the luxury of being able to afford these. This is a luxury that I did not have once upon a time, but one that I am aware of. Buying secondhand, quality items that live up to their value is always an option. Quality does not always = $$$.
Not a thing, but a concept – “project use it up,” or tracking my empties, has resulted in a greater understanding of what I buy and use, which leads to fewer impulse buys and more selective purchases.
Do you need these things to adopt a lower waste/minimalist philosophy? No. Do they help? Sometimes, but you can find your own joy sparking alternatives. The items listed are items that I love and appreciate for their style and purpose; they have a classic, timeless style and will serve me for years to come.
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Another month, another round of stuff I used up.
Kicking it off with the supplements… my doctor is in awe of my self-experimenting and documentation.
On to the products…
The red and green ones are actually declutters. I gave up on trying to use them because they were always scratchy and dry. They were part of a set that I plan to give away at work (where pens walk away on a regular basis). I used up the yoobi and the Faber-Castell was a mediocre brush pen for calligraphy that didn’t quite work out.
What I used up in May. Body care and supplements.
Zero Waste Home by Bea Johnson
Part of reducing my consumption and learning to live simply is my desire to live a more sustainable, eco-friendly lifestyle. I have a long way to go, but this book provides practical, tested advice from one of the top advocates of the Zero Waste Movement.
Nothing new, but I am appreciating a nude pink lip now that the season is changing. Current rotation: MAC Mehr and Patisserie (obvs. not cruelty free or eco, but I’m not a purist), and Kosas Undone.
Between writing and life, I shoved recording to the side, so no videos for the moment. Instead, I give you the latest installment of The Bluestocking Circle Podcast — lady nerds on popular culture.
Another video in the minimalist transitions series.
Let’s delve into my closet for another round.
Not that anyone has asked, but these videos help me make sense of my belongings and aid in the process of decluttering :).
Also, post-video update: the white shelf is now gone and a simpler, smaller solution in place. Progress every time.
A few months ago, my mom unearthed my old cd collection. This is good, because it means she finally cleared out enough of her own stuff to return what was left of mine. However, there was something about sorting through those old albums that made it really hard to purge. It had been years since I played any of the cds in the box, but the thought of parting with them was extremely difficult. They were tied up in nostalgia and sentiment in a way that surprised me. So I left them in a box and let them gather dust for a few months.
Three, to be exact. I looked through them a couple of times, but couldn’t do it. Then, the day after the Garbage concert, I was ready. I knew what I needed to do and I did it. The result is a small collection of albums that were essential to my young adulthood, and includes those that I still enjoy today. I sorted them into three sleeve cases, and kept a handful of soundtracks for future library events and writing sessions. The rest, I donated. They’re gone and I’m free of the baggage (in more ways than one).
I have the flu! Which means I had a lot of time to sort through my bedroom and make some decisions. This is a fairly small declutter, but after the last two rounds of decluttering, I am down to those items I thought stood a chance. They didn’t, but I sometimes I find it better to wait than to live with regret.
I was going to film a video, but these items are not revolutionary, so a post will suffice. I also tossed my empties. I was in the mood to purge and decided I could live without sharing my thoughts on mediocre products.