Minimizing for me is a two-prong process: Prong 1: getting rid of the excess; and Prong 2: refusing to purchase what you don’t need. While you are in the midst of downsizing your possessions (or even if you’re just entertaining the thought of doing so), you can move the process of minimizing right along by refusing to accumulate any more items than you already have now. That would be Prong 2. If you’re like me, your abode is cluttered with an abundance of specific items which you tend to buy over and over again, even though you already have more than you can possibly use in your lifetime. For me, it’s spiral notebooks, vitamin and mineral supplements, nail clippers, books, magazines, office supplies, greeting cards, and contract bridge supplies.
Once you’ve made a list of the items you tend to hoard (let’s call it your Clutter-Buster List), then you make a list of the places where you buy them (let’s call this your Clutter-Avoidance List). Hardly a week goes by that I don’t shop at one of these places: CVS, Walgreens, and Rite-Aid (for greeting cards, spiral notebooks and nail clippers), Staples (for office supplies), baronbarclay.com (for contract bridge supplies), Whole Foods Market (for magazines and vitamin and mineral supplements), and paperbackswap, dealoz, and abebooks (for books).
So here’s what you can do. First, make a list of the items you have in excess. Second, next to each item, list the place where the bulk of these purchases are made. Be sure to list online stores where applicable. And ultimately … do your best to avoid shopping at these places. If you must shop at a store you have listed, then do not buy any of the items on your Clutter-Buster List. Keep your Clutter-Buster List and your Clutter-Avoidance List handy as a gentle reminder of your ongoing commitment to stop clutter in its tracks. If you do this, you are well on your way to keeping your clutter at bay. That’s my minimalist tip for the day.
If you would like to share any of the items on your Clutter-Buster List or Clutter-Avoidance List, please feel free to post a comment.
Keeping it easy and breezy,
Vita Reid – The One Minute Minimalist