January is over (hallelujah). So is our minimalist challenge.
Just to get it out of the way up front, we didn’t finish it. We got to day 20ish and petered out. As much as I had wanted to finish it, we just didn’t. But I did learn some valuable things from the not finishing, so here we go!
We ended up getting rid of ??? things, plus trash. I know some of the Goodwill employees pretty well now…
Something to consider. I have been on this minimalist journey for years now. There was some extraneous stuff to get rid of this time, but I have been decluttering and thinking through things for a looong time. There really wasn’t that much in my house that I had not thought through and considered. We don’t keep piles of things around, or have random corners filled with boxes of junk. So we petered out.
Something I have been thinking about is perhaps it is time to stop. I have reached the point where I can slow down. I don’t have to analyze every little thing in my house, because I already have. I don’t have to go on big purges, because there is nothing left to purge. My house does not look like a poster child for minimalism, and that is just fine. It doesn’t have to. My house does what I need it to do, be a safe haven, a place of comfort and rest, and a place to host guests.
The point of minimalism is to keep stuff from taking over our lives. Being obsessed with getting rid of my stuff is letting it take over my life. If I have an extra poster on the wall, oh well. If I have one more knife than I perhaps need, the world won’t end. I have what I need, I have beautiful things to make my house lovely. I should be content with what I have right now.
Another thing I considered, is my relationship with my husband is more important than a minimalism challenge. We could have powered through to the end of the month. Maybe. But it would have been a fight every step of the way. Our home would have become a battle ground. No thank you. I prize my husband over having a picture perfect house. Anyway, his kind of organized work bench that has the tendency to drive me crazy has come in handy more often than my perfectly organized desk. (sometimes, those random things you saved for a rainy day are actually used. Crazy!)
So there you go, my thoughts and lessons from the minimalism challenge. I am glad we did it, and I am glad we ended when we did.