It has been about two months since I’d decided to live minimal. First lesson? Stop buying.
The first step into minimalism is not decluttering. It’s STOP buying. Here is a list of stuff I stop buying:
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I love to read…including magazines. Sometimes, I re-read these magazines, I used to keep them around for leisure reading. My kinda therapy. But it’s taking up space and I can’t find any reason to keep them around anymore. Almost everything can be read online. Click!
Hi kids, this is the old-school way of taking down notes. Looking at the amount of notebooks I have, you can figure out how nerd I was, I took notes almost about everything. And I love to scribble and writing down my thoughts. And just like the magazines, it will just keep accumulating my space and doesn’t serve me regularly. However, I still keep a sketch book for creative outlet. The rest of the note-taking is done digitally.
3) Fast fashion (or clothes I don’t actually need or really love)
I have not been shopping for clothes. Shopping was my therapy, it was my hobby. To make this harder, there are sales everywhere! Christmas and New Year is coming and boy! those ‘SALE’ sign on the windows are so tempting! As I’m going ‘rehab’ to cure my shopaholic addiction, I refuse to go in any of the shops, even to just look around. My eyes lingers a little while, scanning over the clothes as I walk by the shop. You see…it was difficult. Hahaha!
4) Extra perfume, extra lotion, extra “everything-that-smells-nice”
This lotion is one of five lotions I currently have. Haha, yes I’m a hoarder of beauty products. The more the merrier! Especially those that smells really good. I think it’s nothing wrong having lotion and perfume (oh I love perfume!) but when I buy unconsciously, it keeps piling up in my drawer and I wonder how many lotion and perfume does a normal human need? I was obviously abnormal.
Friends and mom keep giving me lotions, but I said “No, thank you”. Phew! I did it, thank God:)
5) Unhealthy snacks
Every now and then, I used to buy myself a sweet treat, like a pat on the back, after a day of hard work. But ever since I’ve decided to live healthier, I try to reduce buying and consuming unhealthy food. Our body is the temple of God, so I thought I shouldn’t feed it with “garbage” (this is a very extreme term, just an expression, no offence!) So I opt for fruits or other healthier snacks.
To be honest, sometimes I still have the urge to take that chip or sweet beverage at the shopping aisle, but I will try not to succumb to it and tell myself “Don’t buy, won’t eat.” (不买就不会吃). The outcome? Reduce snack intake by 90%. Hooray! Additional point: less plastic waste.
I’m putting “books” at the end of this list because books and I are just inseparable. It was so hard. After decluttering my room, I found out that the next greatest possession I had after clothing are my books. I went through my books and found some books I really love and some I just don’t read anymore. I sorted out my collections and separate it into three piles:
1- Donate to library
2- Pass it to someone else
Ever since I buy less of fiction books, I’ve reduced the amount of books I bought. Many non-fiction books I’d borrowed from the library and that’s great! I can continue my love for reading without buying too many books. People opt for e-books because you can go paperless and you don’t need shelves to keep them. But I still prefer reading on paper, because I do not want to strain my eyes reading from the screen.
Since book gives me joy and add incredible values in my life, I still keep them but I’d stop buying books excessively and if I can borrow, I will not buy it. After minimalism, I’ve also decided to let go some of my books so that it can bless and add values on other people instead. It feels good to be able to share stuff that I considered beneficial and I personally love.
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So far, I’m enjoying the minimalism approach in life. It certainly has helped me to live intentionally and be more sustainable and saved $$$. I hope to maintain this list and expand it in the future. Fingers crossed!