Real Life Minimalists: Aly

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 we hear from Aly, who’s embarking on her minimalist journey together with her mother. Follow the duo’s progress on their blog,

Aly writes:

My mother and I have always struggled to find balance in our lives. We wondered where the extra money vanished to, why we were always so disorganized, and what we could do to reverse the never ending cycle of having too much but never having enough. While she is self-employed and I work for a local software company, we each felt the daily struggles of finding our own way.

One day I stumbled across minimalism. It took me by surprise actually. The fact that so many people were finding such happiness in only the barest essentials had me intrigued. I fell in love. I Googled and searched, read and watched. Every nook and cranny I could find about minimalism I devoured. I forwarded this information over to my mother. Within a few days my mother and I had decided we wanted to change.

Each of us began to dive into our homes and declutter. While I was in my home, my mother was in hers, each of us removing the unnecessary from our lives. Slowly we have been emptying the unnecessary from our homes and filling our lives with more love and joy.

Although it is still an ongoing task, just knowing there’s someone so close to me going through the same process is great. We are able to talk to one another and help each other out, but at the end of the day we each need to find our own way to happiness. Together we decided to chart our journeys and discoveries, and we created Every week we each make our own strides and blog about our challenges, discoveries, and successes.

My mother and I are already very close, but this development has been bringing us even closer. This has not only been the start of a journey for us, but also a discovery. We are discovering who we really are and what we truly want from life. Together we will succeed, but individually we will blossom. Who we will become is still yet to be discovered, but every day I’m more excited to meet that person.

{If you’d like to learn more about minimalist living, please consider reading my book, The Joy of Less, A Minimalist Living Guide, or subscribing to my RSS feed.}

21 comments to Real Life Minimalists: Aly

  • Thanks for sharing! I completely understand the feeling of wondering where all the money went–in fact that’s still somewhat of a struggle for us. But minimalism certainly does make it better!

    I think it’s so special that you and your mom are going through this journey together.

  • Nadya

    Your story is inspiring. I especially like that you have made it a journey with your Mom, it seems to give you support and strength along the way. Happy holidays!

  • A wonderful example of how minimalism can lead to a journey of self discovery and personal growth. Good luck Aly (and Mum) with your minimalist journey and with your blog (I shall be returning to it over the holidays for a good read).

  • LouLou

    Just goes to show how we are sucked in by consumerism – until we discover minimalism – that we have no track of our money! Terrifying! If we work hard for our money, we shoul track ever cent.

    I pity the poor suckers who hand over their dollars and cents without thinking!

    merry Christmas to one an all.

    Lou xxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxx

  • Lulu

    What a wonderful story (and one that resonates with me – overwhelmed by too much stuff and wondering to where are earnings disappear). Even more beautiful is that you tr able to go through this journey with your mother. I hope one day my 6 yr old and 6 month old and I will see eye to eye as you am your mother do.

  • Karen

    Aly, I love your blog. It is clear, focused, well written and a good read. You’ve given me some good ideas for my next round of decluttering and I will definitely recommend your blog to my friends.

    Happy holidays!

  • Aly, Thanks for sharing you story.

    I love that you worked your way into this world with your mother.

    My mother is definitely in need of some help in this direction, but I am unsure if she is ready yet. Although, she has said I can help her with her garage.

    I am now off to check out your blog.

    All the best with your journey

  • Helen

    How lovely to have your Mum as a declutter buddy.

  • What a great journey to share with someone you are so close to! Thanks so much for sharing it with us, and for being a great inspiration!

    Can’t wait to check out your blog!

  • Ahsha

    Thank you for sharing your story Aly. So many of us work and wonder where all that hard earned money goes. Now my own family lives on much less and reap great rewards. I am so happy for you and for your mother.

  • Tina

    Minimalism certainly allows one to save more money. Especially being a minsumer. We have 1 bottle of laundry detergent, 1 bottle of dish washing detergent, 2 bars of bath soap, etc. So much more space. My mom is in a nursing home and I store her out of season clothes in a couple of empty drawers we have here and part of an empty closet.

  • Tina

    I bought 6 rolls of toilet paper a few days ago. A month’s supply. I watch the shows where the coupon queens have roomfuls of pop, paper products, breakfast cereal and the like. Having only a little means we live in less space. I mentioned to my husband that our 1600 square foot condo was huge and we could go smaller. His response was to show me some McMansions with 3 car garages and tell me our friends lived in places like that.

  • We recently were at a huge home with a circular drive, many cars, etc. Inside, every wall was full of pictures, sports memorabilia, etc. No place for the eye to rest. I can’t imagine living like that. My goal is to rid ourselves of the things we don’t need, that don’t make us happy.

  • Tina

    My daughter and I were at a shower at one of the biggest homes I’ve ever been in. Not Windsor Castle or Biltmore, just a really huge home. I always want to go smaller and have less and then I see how others live.

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