PDA

View Full Version : Is anyone here a minimalist?



Molly
5-23-17, 3:52pm
I am starting to declutter my house in preparation to downsize to a house half the size. I have 30 years of stuff, and I consider myself somewhat of a minimalist, but we have a big house so the basement and other storage space has gotten filled up. My husband is a pack rat, and a good deal of the stuff is his.

I don't get too attached to things and really don't want to bring anything to the new house that I don't actually use. (Hubby is different - he hangs onto things 'just in case')

Actually, hubby might have to go too. Things have not been good for years, life is short, and maybe it's time to move on.

So minimalists, what is your philosophy on stuff, what do you keep, what is important to you and what is not?

razz
5-23-17, 4:15pm
When I moved after DH's passing, I offered what my family wanted to them by a certain date, I chose what I wanted and sold to a farm auction what they could sell, gave a neighbour a reasonable price to clear out the large shed and gave the rest away. Done!
I had been reducing my stuff in preparation since I knew that we would be moving within the next 5 years - such as reducing down to one set of dishes, pots, flatware and have not missed anything.

If you aren't absolutely sure that you have used it in the past year, get rid of it. My minimalist philosophy is that I bought whatever item for the benefit, I used it and now it has no value to me; so it is very easy to get rid of stuff with that mindset.

frugal-one
5-23-17, 5:19pm
We did the same as you are now doing about a year ago. We had 3 garage sales that summer (one each month). Whatever did not sell was packed up and given to St Vinny's. The house is clean and nice now. If I bring something in... something has to go out. So, essentially I am replacing worn items. I am getting more and more minimalistic too. Now I have stemless wine glasses that can be used for all kinds of drinks instead of all different kinds of glasses ... for example. The things I kept were things I absolutely loved. The rest is gone. Important things to me are useful items or items that bring me joy. I am not into "things" either. Good luck with your endeavor!

herbgeek
5-23-17, 5:24pm
I can't quite call myself a minimalist, but I do regularly go through things every few years. I found I bought a lot of things in anticipation- anticipation I would have certain types of functions which I never do, for example. So after a few years, if I haven't become the person who uses those things, out they go. Sometimes things are fun for a time, but then you move on, and its time to get rid of those things.

Oddball
5-23-17, 5:34pm
I loosely follow the feng shui approach. If I don't need it or love it, it goes. In reference to your hubby, I'm not quite as decisive with people, but I do value my time more than my stuff. So I'm picky about the people I share time with. Life is short indeed.

Teacher Terry
5-23-17, 8:01pm
I have been getting rid of stuff for years. When we downsized to 1400 sq ft I gave away or sold half of our furniture and other stuff. I have really reduced the number of nik-naks that I have etc. Most collections I have are gone. I had a big doll collection and now have 2 dolls. The rest I gave to silent auctions to help pay for people's medical bills. We have had garage sales and donated tons of stuff. The less clutter the better I feel. However, I like to have some decorations , etc otherwise a house feels too sterile to me.

Gardnr
5-23-17, 9:42pm
Am I a minimalist? By definition no. compared to the average American oh yes!

I don't DO clutter! Don't do nick-nacks. I like open space on counters. The artwork on our walls was made for us by people we love or purchased directly from the artist.

Everything here has a home and goes back after use. I go through every cupboard/shelf/closet every year and remove what hasn't been used. I constantly have a box in which to gather things for goodwill delivery when it's full. I'm on #3 for this year already. We've been in this home 26+ years. I have empty space in cupboards/closets and always have.

Best of luck with the roommate hoarder:(

flowerseverywhere
5-23-17, 11:54pm
Actually, hubby might have to go too. Things have not been good for years, life is short, and maybe it's time to move on

This is the most important sentence. Everything else is just stuff. What would you do if you moved on.

BikingLady
5-24-17, 5:56am
Gardnr, DO we live int he same home?? That is us all over. If we don't use it it is gone, If it does not make us happy, bring value or change our life we do not buy if (hopefully). We have big items but nothing clutter filling. Cupboards and shelves are empty. Garage space is filled, tidy and dust free.

Tammy
5-24-17, 8:55am
Yes I'm minimalist with things.

Husband and I are visiting our daughter and son in law in Toronto this week. It is hitting me how much time has passed - they have been married 12 years already. We have made countless trips back and forth between Ohio Toronto and phoenix over the years.

Last night I was thinking about the highlights of my 55 years of life. I wrote a list of all the things that stand out to me over those years in rough chronological order. I mentioned jobs and houses and cities that have changed over the years. But the heart of the list is births and visits and vacations of/to/with my kids and other family.

It is very clear to me this week how the years are rolling by and how precious all of these people are.

I have never been so acutely aware of the high value of our relationships and experiences, and the low value of our possessions.

ToomuchStuff
5-24-17, 11:08am
I think most here would be considered right sizers. Ultraangler though says he is one (not sure his total number of items currently and I think he is on vacation, outside the country).

LDAHL
5-24-17, 11:21am
What is a minimalist, really? Someone who hoards space?

JaneV2.0
5-24-17, 12:31pm
What is a minimalist, really? Someone who hoards space?

:idea:

Molly
5-24-17, 3:24pm
This is the most important sentence. Everything else is just stuff. What would you do if you moved on.

I'm thinking of moving this answer to a different thread. So much to think about. So many decisions to weigh.

oldhat
5-25-17, 4:04pm
Actually, hubby might have to go too. Things have not been good for years, life is short, and maybe it's time to move on.

Not to be too lighthearted about it, but it's certainly easier to be a minimalist when you're single.

I consider myself a minimalist, although not hard-core. My downsizing occurred mainly as I repeatedly moved across the country years ago, leaving a trail of possessions behind me. A few things that have been helpful to me:

--If you haven't worn an item of clothing in the past year, let it go.
--Consider getting a scanner, if you haven't already got one, and digitizing paperwork and photos.
--Set a limit on the number of books you can have, maybe 15 or 20. I had a hard time letting go of some books until I starting to think of giving them away as helping introduce someone to a book I'd enjoyed. (And if you didn't enjoy the book, who cares?) If you feel a strong need for many books, get a Kindle.
--Assuming you have a smartphone, think of all the things it does--camera, MP3 player, recorder, alarm clock, timer, etc. etc. etc. You can get rid of all those things.
--Likewise with your laptop. No need for a TV or DVD player.

Teacher Terry
5-25-17, 4:44pm
My smartphone is not going to replace my computer, TV or alarm clock. A have a curio cabinet full of antique glassware and hummels. I donated everything to a dog rescue group that has a upscale thrift and collectible store. That felt really good. Now i will sell the cabinet. I have been getting rid of stuff for decades and right when I think I have nothing left to get rid of I find something. They say most people only wear 20% of their clothes. When I semi-retired 2/3's of my clothes went. Then I lost 30 lbs and everything big went too. I had kept smaller pants which was good and only had to buy tops.

ApatheticNoMore
5-26-17, 1:05pm
--If you haven't worn an item of clothing in the past year, let it go.
--Consider getting a scanner, if you haven't already got one, and digitizing paperwork and photos.
--Set a limit on the number of books you can have, maybe 15 or 20. I had a hard time letting go of some books until I starting to think of giving them away as helping introduce someone to a book I'd enjoyed. (And if you didn't enjoy the book, who cares?) If you feel a strong need for many books, get a Kindle.
--Assuming you have a smartphone, think of all the things it does--camera, MP3 player, recorder, alarm clock, timer, etc. etc. etc. You can get rid of all those things.
--Likewise with your laptop. No need for a TV or DVD player.

you had me until you said to get rid of the books and use a Kindle. NOOOOO!!!!!

I have a dumb phone, but I'm always thinking of getting an alarm clock as backup (getting up on time is not-negotiable just because "my cell phone decided to kick the bucket"). Problem is I have no idea if anyone even makes a well made non-digital alarm clock anymore ... It's obsolete technology I guess, but I remember them being pretty unreliable even back in the day.

pinkytoe
5-26-17, 4:12pm
I doubt I'm a minimalist as the word to me connotes another extremism. However, we did get rid of 3/4 of our possessions when we moved last fall. That being said, I am so mad at myself for not saving certain practical things which I am now having to buy once again. Glass jars for storing food, extra towels, coat hangers, yard and garden tools, cleaning supplies, office supplies, lamps, etc. For some strange reason, I thought I wouldn't need those kind of things anymore or that they would be easy enough to replace. I forgot to factor in inflation as everything seems to have doubled or tripled in price since I last bought these things. And poor DH left behind many of his tools, lawn mower etc as we were trying to save on moving expenses.

Ultralight
5-27-17, 8:16am
I am starting to declutter my house in preparation to downsize to a house half the size. I have 30 years of stuff, and I consider myself somewhat of a minimalist, but we have a big house so the basement and other storage space has gotten filled up. My husband is a pack rat, and a good deal of the stuff is his.

I don't get too attached to things and really don't want to bring anything to the new house that I don't actually use. (Hubby is different - he hangs onto things 'just in case')

Actually, hubby might have to go too. Things have not been good for years, life is short, and maybe it's time to move on.

So minimalists, what is your philosophy on stuff, what do you keep, what is important to you and what is not?

I like this old saying:
"Love people, use stuff; because the other way around does not work."

I am a minimalist with less than 200 things. Minimalism has increased my happiness noticeably, expanded my circle of acquaintances, and given me a richer love for what I really care about.
Perhaps you will find the same result in yourself after to do a massive decluttering...

Ultralight
5-27-17, 8:19am
And yes, I hoard empty space! ;)

beckyliz
5-31-17, 3:40pm
The Minimalists have a long list of podcasts that I've started to listen to. They started the podcasts before they released their documentary (may still be available on Netflix). Minimalism isn't necessarily about getting rid of most of your stuff; instead, it's about being mindful about how you spend your money and time. So much of what we spend our time and money on are because of how we've been conditioned all these years. If you don't use it or it doesn't bring you joy, let it go.

artist
6-4-17, 9:38pm
So minimalists, what is your philosophy on stuff, what do you keep, what is important to you and what is not?

My basic rule of thumb is that if we use it on a regular basis, we keep it. We never hold onto things "just in case". We also find that having more than we actually need to be stressful.

Decorative items that do not have an actual purpose, are kept to a minimum and we can count those items on one hand. Choosing instead to decorate with practical items such as handmade quilts, candles (that are lit regularly) and houseplants that help clean the air in our home.

Clothing is kept to just what we actually wear on a regular basis. Everything we own, including out of season clothing, is in our one dresser that we share and our basic closet. We do not store clothing elsewhere.

Holiday decor is just Christmas and this too fits in a single tote.

Our basement is empty and not used for storage.

The only items I have more of than neccessary is books. We read a lot as we choose not to have TV viewing in our lives and between my husband and myself we have two bookshelves full of books and usually a small stack of library books on top of what we own. Though we do mimimize what we own to always fit on our shelves, donating older books we will not read again, whenever new ones come into the house.

We could easly go down to a smaller home without paring down much. Right now our home is 964 sq ft with 300 sq ft in the basement that is finished into dh's home office/ laundry room. Our dream home that we are designing (to be built someday), is only 750 sq ft total.