Day X – Finishing The Minimalism Game
0 – Yes, Zero.
Okay, so clearly I’ve come back from a long writing break. A very long break. So apologies to those whole subscribed and had been waiting for the finish, and thanks to those lovely bloggers who commented their support.
In my Minimalism Challenge, I had hit a wall. I was beginning to suffer from my lack of possessions.
Before I elaborate, let’s define the term minimalism… Minimalism, as a lifestyle choice and personal practice, is to remove distracting clutter from our lives. When we do this we appreciate the people, possessions and hobbies in life that truly enhance our existence because we have removed the distractions.
So I was not suffering because I had too little, I was suffering because I had begun to deprive my self. My bedroom and study had become a bland, stark environment with the basic furnishings that you’d expect in those rooms, but with no life, personality, or expressions. My life had dulled to greyscale and my wardrobe had changed to match the black and white of it. Everything I had was fine, but it was flat. Two-dimensional. Boring.
At day 27 of the challenge, my minimalising had changed from a journey of self-discovery to a personal martyrdom. I had become obsessed with the objects, not the goal of Minimalism. Minimizing had become deprivation and an emptiness. So I stopped.
At the time, I labelled the entire experience a failure and repressed it. I had wanted to do a follow post explaining why I had stopped, but until recently, I didn’t even know why I did.
Throughout my challenge, I had learnt a lot about how I personally interact with my possessions and conscientiously justifying items I decided to keep and remove. I learnt that as a creative individual, I need colour. I learnt that as an outdoor eco-nut, I need greenery around me. Wallet in hand I was off to the garden store and spotlight and bought half a dozen indoor plants and two colourful bedsheets!
“What? You’re a Minimalist. You can’t buy things? Hypocrite!” Yes, I understand it is contradictory. But let’s challenge that statement. Remember, Minimalism is about removing the clutter to appreciate what truly enhance our existence. After those purchases, my personal environment immediately felt more like home. The only one who needs to justify keeping, donating, discarding, buying any item is yourself.
Minimalism is important to me. It is a huge value that enhances my life in so many aspects. Stress, finances (less house cleaning!). One thing it does consistently bring is a sense of freedom. Personal freedom to do, be, create anything I want.
Without the clutter, I can live life!
Moving forward, I’ll be working on a collection of Minimalist and simple living essays around living and inspired and simply life. Neither of which is easy. If it was easy, everyone would do it.
Total Number of Items Discarded to date: 474