First Steps in Simplifying

We’re realizing how much stuff we have. All part of being in an affluent society, but do we really need to be surrounded by so many things? Especially when we only use about 10% of it all in the first place? It’s making me feel suffocated.

Begin your simplification process in one room and only tackle one specific aspect of that room. Looking around our bedroom, we saw a fair amount of small furniture pieces (mismatched nightstands and CD towers – you can see one of the towers in the photo), a ton of clothes, knick-knacks, dusty blinds I wouldn’t touch with a 10-foot pole and baskets of dirty laundry. Instead, we wanted our bedroom to be a peaceful and inviting place where we want to spend time (ooh-la-la).

The room: The bedroom
The goal: get rid of or consolidate bedroom furniture

When starting to simplify, ask yourself: “What can I do without?” or even better and easier, “What don’t I use?”

Some have also asked themselves, “Does this bring me joy?”. If it doesn’t, it leaves the house. You can pitch it, give it or sell it, but it’s gone.

The first step we took was to rip all of our physical CDs and store the digital files on our server. In this age of streaming online music, who needs physical media that can eventually fail you? It was really easy to take a stack or two of CDs at a time and swap them in and out of the computer while catching up on emails. After about a week, all of the CDs were gone and we got rid of our CD towers!

We used Max to do it. It’s FREE and for use on Mac OS.

It was a small difference, but a difference that was immediately felt each time we came into our room. And the best part? It fits my “it has to be easy” rule AND my “if it can be done in 20-minutes or less” rule. In the next few posts I’ll mention how we cut our wardrobe by more than half and made our room eventually feel like we’re on vacation each time we’re in there.

Beginning to simplify your stuff seems like a daunting task, but I know you can do it. Our “stuff” is only temporary while we live on this world. We can break the hold it has over our lives. You can begin this process by taking it a small step at a time (don’t worry, I’ll remind you to keep it simple). A room, a goal and a specific directive. Everything I’m sharing with you has taken months so far, and it will be a continuing process, but a fulfilling one. Remember, it’s only 20-minutes or less when you take the time to do it. Like all good and lasting changes in life, it’s subtle and takes time. And we’ll do the time together.

P.S. I’ll show you a photo of our “new” room in the next post where I tackle consolidating clothes.

First Steps in Simplifying

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