Lately I’ve been drawn to a number of blogs that talk about minimalist living. I’ve mentioned Becoming Minimalist, which is a favourite blog, and I also quite like Zen Habits and Miss Minimalist. There are many things in these blogs that don’t particularly interest me (I can guarantee I won’t be turning vegan anytime soon) but I find myself increasingly drawn to the idea of living with less. I don’t mean living in one room, sleeping on a futon and balancing my one and only dinner plate on a milk crate. Ha. NO. I’m currently living in a fairly roomy 2-bedroom villa and I’m quite content to stay here, thank you very much. But what I would like is to pare down my possessions. I have a double wardrobe in my room and it’s completely full. Hanging space, shelves and blanket box shoved in there – all full. I have a single wardrobe in my study – also full. Eight double-doored cupboards in my kitchen (three of them large corner cupboards) – FULL. Ask me what’s in all these wardrobes and cupboards. Go on… ask. Well, I’ll tell you. I have no idea.
Okay, I have some idea. I mean, I know there are clothes in my wardrobe. And shoes, and some spare bedding which doesn’t fit in my linen cupboard. Plus… um… some other stuff. I’m sitting in my study to type this and I’m resisting the urge to check the wardrobe in here. I know there are some board games, some sketch books, possibly a suitcase, and… nope, can’t remember what else is here. The blanket box in my wardrobe is a total mystery. The only thing I can tell you for sure is that it doesn’t have any blankets in it.
This all suggests to me that there is a lot of stuff I not only don’t need but don’t particularly want. I’m not using it, and since I don’t even know what’s there I think it might be safe to say that I’m not missing it.
I’m slowly working my way through things, one little space at a time. I’m not going hell-for-leather on it because I know that will likely make me give up the whole idea after one exhausting weekend. The bit by bit approach will work better for me. But in the meantime I’ve decided I need a little challenge to keep me motivated. And it’s this: for the next almost-two-months (ie, until the end of May) I’m aiming to buy nothing new. No books, no DVDs, no cups, no quirky little teapots, no shoes, no clothes, no underwear, no… other stuff. I have a house full of clothes, shoes, books, DVDs and lots of other things. There is nothing I need. Obviously, I’ll continue to buy food, toiletries and petrol, but nothing that I would have to pack if I were to move house. If something vital breaks and I can’t repair it, then I’ll replace it but I’ll try to replace it with a second hand item where possible. However, I can’t really think of any vital items that might break or need replacing. Perhaps if all my underwear gets stolen off the clothesline… in which case I’ll be replacing it with NEW, not used! But other than that I reckon I can get through two months without needing to buy anything.
I say this with all confidence now. Talk to me again in a month when I want to buy some cute stationery item and it might be a different matter. 😉 Anyone else up for the challenge with me?