At first, I did not actively pursue minimalism.
My goal a few years ago was simply to organize my home. Because I had finally realized and seen that it was a cluttered mess. It finally bothered me to the point where I felt compelled to act. Since I could no longer blame the mess on the kids. They’ve grown!
So my original intention was to simply organize so that my home would be pleasing to the eyes. And, while looking for tips on how to organize, my search led me to YouTube channels that discussed minimalism.
It was a novel concept to me at the time, but I later discovered that minimalism dates back to the 1950s. It might not have gained traction due to our natural desire for more. More things, more materials, more activities, and so on.
However, minimalism made sense to me. So I looked into it further and decided that I want to become a minimalist.
Benefits of minimalism
I felt so much better after my initial decluttering and organizing. In addition, here are some of the benefits I gained from minimalism:
1. Easier to clean and tidy up
Even though our house has a small floor area, I used to struggle with cleaning and organizing it before becoming a minimalist.
I detested sweeping the floor the most. This is due to the fact that I had to do a lot of picking random objects and moving things around before I could do a simple sweep.
But, after decluttering and ensuring that everything has a place. And is off my floors, I found it easier to clean and tidy up. Sweeping my floors has become so simple that I can do it more frequently and with a smile.
2. Things are easier to find
I was able to provide a place for each item with fewer items. So I no longer waste time looking for things because I know where they are.
Also, finding things is no longer a chore because there is no need to sift through a plethora of items in one location before finding what you need.
3. Reduced decision-making
I’m sure many women spend a long time in the morning deciding what to wear. There is even the dilemma of not having anything to wear. Despite having a full closet and drawers full of clothes.
I know. I’ve been there. And it was a bad experience.
I end up feeling like a frump for settling on clothes I don’t feel like wearing. And, I often get late for work, which sets a bad tone for the rest of the day.
But, by reducing my clothing pile to only those that fit well, look good on me. And can be mixed and matched, I was able to avoid decision fatigue.
It made getting dressed in the morning much faster and easier. Because I could just grab and wear any clothes and know that they would fit nicely and look good on me.
4. Mood improvement
Having a clean and tidy home made me much more relaxed and happy.
I used to come home to an untidy living room, piles of unwashed dishes in the sink, and a cluttered dining table that got me all worked up and venting on the husband and the kids.
But now I come home to a more manageable home.
It may not be sparkling clean after a day of activities. However, there are only a few things that can get out of place and need to be cleaned out.
Now it only takes a few minutes to tidy up, and the kids can easily assist.
5. More time for personal growth
Spending less time cleaning and tidying up because I just have a few choice items means I have more time to devote to myself.
I now have more time to pursue hobbies such as reading fiction, crafting, and dabbling in gardening.
Minimalism also encouraged me to focus on personal development rather than accumulating more stuff.
How to start with minimalism
I learned a lot about how to proceed with my own minimalism journey by watching a lot of minimalism-related YouTube channels.
Here are some of the most common minimalism recommendations that I followed for myself.
Initially, I bought a lot more items that I thought I could use to organize our stuff at home. Then, as I became more familiar with the concept of minimalism, I realized that I needed to start by decluttering. Because there was no way I could continue organizing with so many items to manage.
I struggled at first because, first and foremost, I am a very frugal person. I can’t help but think about how much I’d need those items in the future and how much it would cost me to replace them.
But, along the way, I became accustomed to getting rid of items that I no longer needed.
I discovered a donate/swap group on Facebook, where I swapped some items for consumables or simply gave them away to members who actually need them.
I also recycled some of the clothes by making fabric ropes out of them. These fabric ropes are incredibly useful to me because I use them for tying things up, making plant pots or baskets, and decorating recycled boxes that I used for organizing instead of purchasing new ones.
Decluttering took a long time for me. But it was all worthwhile.
I practiced the mantra “a place for everything, and everything in its place.” I hung hooks, dividers, and containers for every item we had.
Minimize wardrobe/Capsule wardrobe
I reduced my wardrobe to what I actually wear.
I let go of clothes that I thought would be fun to wear but were actually not my style. And got rid of clothes that no longer fit.
I also made certain that the clothes I kept would go well together and that there would be no problems with mixing and matching them. Lastly, I got rid of accessories I didn’t wear, such as belts, bangles, and earrings.
Limit buying new stuff
I became mindful of purchasing new items. Keeping in mind the Diderot effect, where a new purchase leads to more purchases because the items you already own have become old and drab to you.
“Let my example teach you a lesson,” Diderot himself said. “Poverty has its advantages; opulence has its disadvantages.”
I took that to heart and limited my purchases of new items.
Also, before purchasing a new item, I check to see if we don’t already have something that can perform the same function as the item we intend to purchase. And if the number of times we will use it will cover the cost of purchasing it.
Regular cleaning and tidying
I learned how to apply the 2-minute rule. That is, if an activity takes less than 2 minutes, go ahead and do it.
This is especially useful for cleaning and organizing. Doing things right away prevents things from piling up and eventually overwhelming you.
I also kept a consistent schedule for doing laundry.
The dishes, I left for the kids to do. Told them to clean up the sink as well after washing the dishes. Then, I showed them where everything goes and made them put everything back where it belongs.
This is a habit I picked up after quitting my job to work from home as a blogger and freelance writer. It definitely made my life easier by answering the question, “What shall we have for lunch?”
I’m sure a lot of parents can relate.
With a meal plan, I can simply check what meal is scheduled for the day and proceed accordingly. My meal plan was pared down to foods that the family actually eats. Then, for variety and when I have time, I look for new recipes to try.
Going for quick, simple, and easy recipes
Along with meal planning, I also simplified my cooking. I chose menus that are easy to prepare and that the family will enjoy.
The meals I prepare contain fewer than ten ingredients, including ubiquitous salt, pepper, onion, and garlic.
When it comes to trying out new recipes, I stick to those that use ingredients I already have on hand. And ingredients I recognize and can pronounce.
Go through our food before buying new groceries
This is another new habit I’ve picked up recently. It took a few instances of spoiled food items such as canned goods, condiments, other food ingredients, and left-over meals for me to finally put my foot down. And implement not buying food unless the food we already had in the house was consumed.
We used to go grocery shopping every weekend, so this habit reduced our grocery runs to once a month.
Minimalism can transform your home and your lifestyle. I may have arrived late to the game, but that does not diminish the fact that becoming a minimalist has benefited me greatly.
Here are some of the benefits I gained from minimalism:
- Easier to clean and tidy up.
- Things are easier to find.
- Reduced decision-making.
- Mood improvement.
- More time for personal growth.
I learned a lot about minimalism from people who practiced it and shared their experiences on YouTube. The following are some of the most common recommendations they shared that I follow for myself.
- Minimize wardrobe/Capsule wardrobe,
- Limit buying new stuff,
- Regular cleaning and tidying,
- Meal plan
- Going for quick, simple, and easy recipes, and
- Go through our food before buying new groceries.
Please share your thoughts or ideas about 5 Reasons Why You Should Adopt Minimalism For Improvement in the comments below. And if you liked this article, you might be interested as well in these articles:
Why Good Habits Beat Motivation
How To Define Yourself By Your Habits
9 Effective Habits For A Happy Life
Building Good Habits For Your To Be
How To Break 9 Bad Habits That Keep You Down
7 Tips On How To Develop A Persistent Habit
5 Organizing Habits You Can Learn From Organized People
7 Good Habits To Develop (Inspired By Gardening)
10 Habits For A Simple Life
Small And Easy Habits That Can Change Your Life
Habits To Overcome The Struggle Of Waking Up Early
10 Simple Minimalist Habits You Can Develop