“Owning less is better than organizing more.” – Joshua Becker, Clutterfree Kids
Minimalism piqued my interest in 2011: I was at the library and discovered a little red book called Clutter Busting by Brooks Palmer. I devoured the book in a few short hours and then read it several times before finally deciding to obtain a copy of my own. The “personal growth” book became my go-to when I was feeling overwhelmed with the number of kid’s toys, books, and stuff that was accumulating in closets, cupboards, and drawers.
For about seven years, I had been working on getting rid of stuff in fits and starts; I was fed up with organizing and re-organizing things in our home. I was tired of storage containers and organizing systems and wanted simplicity. In order to accomplish a minimal home, I needed to work on it consistently.
I had read Marie Kondo’s The Life Changing Magic of Tidying Up and was able to release quite a bit out of my closet, but I wanted more. I wanted a minimal home, a simple lifestyle, and freedom from the things that held old identities.
At the end of August 2018, I came across Uncluttered, a 12-week online course “designed intentionally to help you own less, live more, and discover the life you’ve always wanted” created by Joshua Becker, founder of Becoming Minimalist and author of The More of Less, Uncluttered Kids, and The Minimalist Home.
I hesitated for a few days, uncertain about signing up but the lure of structure in the course: webinars, weekly challenges, videos, and a supportive Facebook community finally had me enrolling in the course.
During those twelve weeks, the reduction of some of the items in my home included my childhood Nancy Drew Books, my 27-year old wedding gown, and my children’s artwork. I’ve had the joy of writing and sharing my experiences of my decluttering in my blog posts: Next Chapter, Angel Gown, and Goodbye Artwork; and love when people tell me how they’ve finally let go of such-and-such.
A few weeks ago, Joshua reached out to our group and asked if there was anybody in the group willing to be interviewed by the New York Times on how the Uncluttered Course had been successful in helping to declutter our homes and our lives; they were looking to profile a few different people on how the “Becoming Minimalist” approach helps people.
I pondered over his question before replying: “I signed up for the course because I needed support helping me stay to stay focused on the stuff I had neatly stored in closets, in drawers
Interestingly, I was one of the members selected to talk to the reporter for the New York Times: http://tinyurl.com/y2x67pzn
Since that interview, I’ve being thinking about how I had been living my life up until my pulmonary embolism and before my Lyme diagnosis: I had a full-time job, contributing to a dual income that really did nothing other than help pay for “things”. I had (what I thought) was perfect health. I had little free time because I was always feeling overwhelmed.
I like the life I am living now, as a minimalist with training wheels. Becoming a minimalist doesn’t happen overnight; it takes focus and work and sometimes it ruffles the feathers of family members.
I don’t miss organizing and I love owning less. I spend less money, preferring to look for creative options rather than buying new.
As I let go of things, my life has become rich with growth, faith, and deeper connections.
I have less worry and anxiety and most importantly: I have more time, and that is something that money cannot buy.