ReductionistPosted: September 8, 2014
“Minimalism is the intentional promotion of the things we most value and the removal of everything that distracts us from it.”
In my old age (ha), I’m turning into a minimalist.
Well, not really. I think a better term would be reduction-ist.
It’s not that I want us to live a minimal lifestyle. I just want to live a reduced lifestyle.
Our apartment was teeny-tiny, but I was determined when we moved into our house, not to have an explosion of “stuff.”
We have 3 drawers in our kitchen. And one of them is only about 4″ wide, rendering it almost completely useless. So we have one drawer with our silverware and one drawer with our kitchen utensils. I was looking for a measuring cup and realized we have three sets of measuring cups. Now really, that’s not that many. But when you only have one drawer, it’s too many. Just getting rid of ONE cleared up a lot of space in that drawer. In that same trip through the utensil drawer, I found 4 spatulas. Too many. Now we have 2. I also realized we had 2 spaghetti-strainer-spoon-thingies. Technical term. So to the Goodwill pile one went.
We have empty shelves in our cabinets since moving and I have every intention of keeping it that way. Mama came a few weeks ago to help me paint and just do some other things around the house. She remarked that we needed a drain basket for our dishes and I thought, “Nah. Stacking them on a towel has worked fine for this long. I guess we can just keep doing that.”
I also got rid of my curling irons. I don’t remember the last time I curled my hair, if I have EVER curled my hair. Plus my hair straightener can do it. Multi-use tools for the win.
It’s not just my physical “stuff” either. Y’all, I’m going whole-hog. I deleted Facebook off my phone. (I know. Revolutionary.) I’m unfollowing people on Instagram and Pinterest.
None of these things are that big of a deal. But small steps are better than no steps at all.
We have too much stuff. And when I say we, I mean Ryan and I, and I also mean the average American. Granted, Ryan doesn’t have a ton of stuff. Just 700 gray t-shirts and 96 concert posters. But we still have more that we need. Too many pairs of shoes, too much trash, too many blankets, too many craft items for “just in case,” too many plates and cups, too much food, it’s all just too much. I like nice, pretty stuff as much as the next person. But in the end, it’s all just stuff. And it’s meaningless. What’s the point?
I want to have less, so we can do more. The less I buy, the more money we have to do things like go to Chicago or out to eat with friends or to just plain give away.
I realized the other day that I really am “there.” One of the radio stations is giving away a $10,000 shopping spree. Now, I could use $10,000. There is definitely some house stuff that I could pay for like a bed or curtains or having some furniture reupholsterd. But I just don’t need $10,000 worth of more clothes, jewelry, whatever.
And “there” is a great place to be.