Week two done and dusted. To catch up with week one’s progress, you can click here. The good thing about creating your own challenges is you can make them up as you go. This week I continued not purchasing anything beyond the essentials. This basically encompasses consumables: food, fuel, train tickets, nappies. I did buy a couple of bunches of flowers as gifts also, but as I said, that’s the joy of following my own challenge. I am not advocating or targeting a purist minimalist lifestyle. i read recently, if an object gives you joy, thats a great guide to know if you keep it or not.
I have been really enjoying the challenge so far, and although I haven’t found it too difficult, I been shocked by how many times I need to catch myself-it has become second nature to click click and buy. If Amazon Prime goes into administration you will know why! It’s simple enough to keep off online shopping, or not head to a department store. It’s more the likes of Instagram scrolling, or a trip to the Supermarket. It had become second nature to pick up a few additional bits and pieces.
I decided to extend upon the non purchasing to getting rid of some of the “stuff” in our home. I tend to hang onto stuff, I get emotional attached to the memories associated with items, and the story they tell. Seriously, do all 21 table spoons all have precious memories. That’s no exaggeration, twenty one! As I mentioned in my six tips to help you begin decluttering, I found recording the number of items really helped me focus on just how unnecessary all this additional “stuff” was. It gave me a good laugh too ( as well as being somewhat confronting), nine dressing gowns for three people, over twenty hats, enough pillow cases for us to have seven each-you get my point. I’m sure I won’t be the only one who has actually moved house with some of their “stuff” and still not really used it. To think some of these items have travelled from the Uk to Australia and back and are still unused.
I spoke about some of the great practical reasons for decluttering in last weeks post, like being able to find what i am looking for in an instant (and not getting an avalanche of bedding land on me each time I go to look for a sheet). Another great motivator is thinking who can benefit from what you are allowing to gather dust. I have a box which contains pots pans glasses and a full kitchen starter kit which I will be delivering in the week to a Charity which work with resettling Refugees in our Community. The excess towels (from the eighteen we had hoarded away) are going to a local Animal Charity. I handed bed linen sets to my younger sister who is studying and has recently moved. I gave a bag of jewellery from a tip to india to the little girls who live next door and I think will love dressing themselves in jingly beads. It feels good to know that objects I haven’t been using to their full potential, will find a new lease of life, in a new home.
So far I have found already five hundred items I can part with, I am amazed how easily I found them, and there’s certainly more to come.
For the following week I will continue my non purchasing and working through the house decluttering. I am going to really focus on what I do bring into the house, and build up for a zero purchase week for week four.
If you’re not familiar with the work of Gretchen Rubin’s ideas about behaviours, habits and willpowers-in brief it is, the concept that once something becomes an ingrained habit, it requires no decision making, less conscious thought and struggles with willpower. I guess that’s something I am hoping to work towards with my challenges, that by committing to the new behaviours, they will become habits. Taking a moment before click clicking through, and being more mindful about needs not wants.
Join in for week two: start going through your home more critically, there are bound to be so many things you can live without. Lots of tips to get your started here.