Every Monday I post Real Life Minimalists, a profile of one of my readers in their own words. If you’d like to participate, click here for details.
Today, I’m pleased to feature Francesca. She did a complete turnaround, from avid accumulator to avid declutterer. You can read more about her experience on her blog, Tasmanian Minimalist.
I still have a long way to go. But, when I consider how far I’ve come, I can’t help but pat myself on the back.
My lurch towards minimalism is an all-encompassing lifestyle change for me. Two and a half years ago, after being partners with a hoarder and being a heavy-duty shopper and hoarder myself, I found myself single again, not to mention, heavily in debt.
In my panic to build up the walls of protection around me, I continued to buy all kinds of things I thought I would need as a single woman trying to build up a home again. I say buy, but really my new boyfriend Mr. Credit Card paid for everything.
Cookware…bedding, furniture (4 sofas in one small house), cushions, clothing, mugs (at one point I had about 60), books and the list goes on.
I somehow thought it would be ok and I would get around to paying it off at a later date.
The house became more full and my happiness levels continued to plunge. One day, nearing crisis point, I realised I was simply buying to fill a hole. I gave away as much as I bought, but continued to buy to fill the physical space I created by giving away in the first place..and so the cycle continued. Then I hit my (very high) credit limit.
I remember actually looking at myself in the mirror and thinking “how can one small person THINK they need all this stuff?” I looked at myself, I mean really looked at myself and thought why had I done all this? It had only served to make me unhappier and more in debt.
So I began to give things away, beginning with sacks and sacks full of clothes. 30 pairs of trousers in one fell swoop just to start. Then off went a settee, books, any duplicates..20 towels..out they went…a kettle, a blender…the list continues.
It was almost like the pendulum has swung in the other direction. As quickly as I wanted things in the past, just as quickly did I want to get rid of all the amassed items. And so it continued, and continues to this day. Along the way I have also started tackling my debt and brought it down a lot..and whilst I often still berate myself for my stupidity, I take comfort in the fact that I now have a much more peaceful, calm environment. I can find everything and I have also helped a lot of people along the way.
Who can put a price on that?
I began to blog my experience on a http://tasmanianminimalist.blogspot.com a few weeks back. I have a daily tally of what I am still getting rid of and I try to include small money saving ideas along the way.
Thank you for listening.
“Eat Your Greens”