Of late, I have made up donation bags of toys, books, linens, and clothing. I put an enormous stack of magazines in the recycling bin. I threw away old make up and lotions. I went through my aged herbs and spices. I binned mystery items lurking in my freezer. Every object relinquished and removed made me feel lighter. To me, it made my home feel lighter.I will never be a true minimalist. I love the philosophy and the aesthetic. However, whilst recently reading Francine Jay’s Miss Minimalist: Inspiration to Downsize, Declutter, and Simplify, the following line gave me pause: “I’ve often wondered, if the place I live were suddenly struck by political unrest or natural disaster, could I walk out the door and leave everything behind?” I suppose I’d have to, but I know what she’s driving at is “leave everything behind without a sense of loss or regret?”
I don’t think so. You see, whilst I love my home to be orderly, tidy, and clutter-free, what remains are things I truly love, beautiful things, sentimental things, books and drawings and photographs and memories that could not be replaced. I hope I inhabit, literally and metaphorically, a place of happy medium – I do not feel compelled to either keep or discard everything. It is more a question of owning my possessions, rather than them owning me.I am an adherent of the rule that “if something comes into the house, something has to go out of it.” I also someone who cleans as I go. I believe in doing a little bit, often. I love the one-thing-each-day rule as well: removing just one thing each day from your home equals 365 unwanted or unneeded things gone in a year. Simple and effective, all. If you’d like to utilise my organising superpowers, let me know. I accept all forms of Champagne. “Very little is needed to make a happy life; it is all within yourself, in your way of thinking.” Marcus Aurelius.