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.
This week, I’m pleased to feature Lena from Germany. She just recently discovered minimalism, but it’s already changed her outlook on life!
Hello! My name is Lena and I live with my husband & two kids in Germany.
At the beginning of February I visited some friends in their new house. They are a family of five living on 900ft2 and I expected it to be totally crowded. To my surprise I loved their house–it was clean, serene and didn¹t feel too small at all.
I thought: That’s what I want! At that point I didn’t really know what it was that I wanted and I didn’t realize why I liked their house so much.
I was always very organized and not a hoarder at all. Still, over the years a lot of stuff had accumulated. And this time, when I started my ritual of spring decluttering, I suddenly didn’t stop after the usual five books and two shirts. I just kept on going. And finally found a name for what I wanted (and what my friends did): Minimalism.
Now, we are still far from being minimalists. We still own a lot of books, a lot of tableware, etc. But I try to use as many ideas from minimalism as possible and my husband and I have decluttered A LOT. There is always a point when I think, now there is nothing left to declutter. And a couple of days later, I find more to give away. We were already able to sell four cupboards and my desk and I love the new space.
I realized that owning all that stuff made me anxious. I felt obliged to use all those cosmetics I owned (now I am making my own–the perfect minimalistic hobby, because you USE all of it and it makes great gifts without any clutter!), wear all the clothes that I didn’t really like (because I paid good money for it!). And I was also anxious to keep that high-paying job of mine in order to be able to keep up our lifestyle.
I have been toying with the idea of starting my own business and I now finally feel that I actually have the freedom to maybe quit my job (which I like but it doesn¹t fulfill me the way it used to) and just go ahead. It’s not decided for good yet, but I am so excited by not feeling held back for money reasons, that I just might do it!