How to lead a more minimalist lifestyle

How to lead a more minimalist lifestyle – words Alexa Wang

Minimalism is a lifestyle trend that’s spread like wildfire during the last few years. The philosophy of minimalist living — which calls for paring down your possessions until only the essentials are left — has struck a chord with people of all cultures and generations.

If you like the sound of decluttering your home and freeing up room in your life for the things that truly matter, then you’d be well advised to give minimalism a go. Don’t worry — this doesn’t involve shaving your head and denouncing material possessions. Just follow these tips for living a more minimalist lifestyle to benefit from the upsides of a decluttered home without having to give up anything you love.

 

Sort through your stuff

The first step to a more minimalist lifestyle is getting rid of the things you don’t use. We all accumulate plenty of possessions over the years, and it’s easy to lose track of what you actually use unless you regularly declutter.

If you’ve got a whole house to sort through, it’s going to take a while to get from top to bottom. Before you begin, it’s important to decide how you’re going to approach the process: all at once or little by little.

The ‘all at once’ method of decluttering — which was popularised by Ryan Nicodemus in a blog post on The Minimalists — involves packing everything you own into boxes as if you were moving home. Then live your life as normal, only unpacking items when you need them. After a month, get rid of everything still in the boxes (apart from essentials like important documents and family heirlooms, of course).

The ‘little by little’ approach, on the other hand, involves tackling clutter a bit at time. Each day, pick a manageable space like a drawer or shelf and spend half an hour or so decluttering just that. This method can help you from getting overwhelmed and giving up.

No matter which approach you choose, make sure you consider each item individually — have you used it in the last six months and are you likely to use it in the next? If not, get rid of it.

Bin, donate, or sell

During the decluttering process, you’re sure to end up with a mountain of things you no longer want. If you don’t deal with these immediately, it’s easy for them to turn back into clutter, so it’s crucial you break them into three categories: bin, donate, or sell.

Bin (or recycle, if you can) anything that you no longer want and wouldn’t be of any value to anyone else, such as threadbare clothes.

Donate the things that are still perfectly fine, but you don’t have any use for anymore. Ask friends and family if they want to give them a new lease of life. If not, use the Charity Retail Association’s charity shop locator to find a local branch where you can donate your unwanted items.

If you’re getting rid of something you think is valuable, it’s well worth your time selling it. There’s plenty of businesses willing to pay good money for unwanted jewellery, musical instruments, and designer clothes, so get quotes for anything you think might be worth a bit of money. Just make sure you go through a reputable retailer like H&T, which has stores all around the country you can sell your items in after you’ve had it valued online through its sell your unwanted items service.

No matter what you choose to do with your unwanted items, make sure you get them out of your house as fast as possible to maintain the momentum and prevent them from turning into clutter again.

Change your shopping habits

All the effort you’ve gone through to streamline your home with minimalist design will go to waste if you fill it back up with clutter within a few months. That’s why it’s important to adjust your shopping habits if you want to reap the benefits of a minimalist lifestyle for years to come.

A simple rule of thumb to follow is to never buy anything on a whim. Your cupboards can quickly start overflowing with things you never use if you buy things without thinking about whether or not you need them. To help prevent this, give yourself a bit of breathing space with every purchase. If you fall in love with a pair of shoes or decide you have to have the latest gadget or gizmo, wait at least 24 hours before you go through with the purchase. If you still want it after carefully considering whether you actually need it, go ahead and buy it. Otherwise, it might be a good idea to leave it — your cupboards and your bank account will thank you for it later.

Follow these tips if you want to follow a more minimalist lifestyle and make it easier to maintain a tidy house. They’ll help you cut the clutter and make room for the things that matter in no time.

How to lead a more minimalist lifestyle – words Alexa Wang