“Owning less is far more beneficial than organizing more.”- Joshua Becker, becoming minimalist.com
As a chick when talking to chicks, my closet and wardrobe are what I am most frequently asked about. I only use a 3′ wide rod in my closet and two dresser drawers for all of my clothes-that’s it. I pack away my “winter” and summer clothes which alternately hang on the rod at different times of the year. I make the seasonal switch twice a year and naturally, purge my wardrobe at that time. If ever my clothes start to expand past the 3′ rod, something is going. Knowing me, a LOT of somethings are going. The benefit: Last time I did the seasonal switch it took 20 minutes. The hardest part is deciding when to do the seasonal switch in north Florida. Cold? Hot? Rain? Hurricane? Who knows….
- Clothes-Use the 90/90 rule.
- Shoes-I have no right to make any recommendations to you-I have weaknesses too.
- Everyone has a favorite color. You don’t have to wear all black or grey (unless you listen to The Cure all day and that is your favorite color). Choose essential pieces that include or coordinate with the color you most love to wear.
STRATEGY: EVERYTHING ELSE
- Actually 90/90 rule works for most anything. You can also switch it to the 180/180 or whatever works best for you.
- Towels and linens-If they are old and holy (cue angelic harp music!) and there is no fitted sheet/flat sheet match trash them. Or if you’re a real man who works on cars and stuff frequently, save a few for garage rags. Hell-donate them to a body shop!
- Furniture that is never used, especially if it causes frustration or annoyance–Sell, donate, eliminate. Do not re-purpose, that’s one more thing on your to-do list that will take away from you doing something meaningful.
- Newspapers, magazines and mail-Recycle, shred ASAP.
- Knick knacks and doilies-If you find them and didn’t know you had them, you don’t need them! Not on display? Not useful? Don’t like them? You have my permission to give them to someone who will or toss them.
- Books and Music (CDs and cassettes)-Let the library store them for you. If you want them, you know where they are. I just went and counted. We, as a family, now own 7 hard copy books. One of which I reference frequently, one is the Bible (I need Jesus!), the other ironically is the book Essential Essays by The Minimalists and is autographed. The other books are not mine.
- Junk Drawer? Allow me to introduce the 20/20 rule!
- Old Photos-Digitize them, toss the photo albums. Nobody looks through them anyway. Get a digital photo frame if you must. People will enjoy seeing the pictures flip by passively than hauling out that 20 lb., now off-white, photo album with the peel-up plastic on a sticky-back discolored page full of polaroids. But for real, if your house catches fire, at least the irreplaceable is in the cloud.
- Important Documents-see above.
- Eliminate Duplicate Tools-Unless cooking is your passion, why do you need more than one spatula? Or even a mixer for that matter? 90/90 your kitchen baby! Thanks to my Dad, I found about 13 Dollar Tree flashlights received as gifts (that’s right, gifts) while minimizing. There was about a 30% success rate on their ability to illuminate. goodbye
- Eliminate what you can borrow or share-We don’t own a chainsaw. My Dad has two (My parents live in a field-I’m not even sure why he has one!) and lives 3 miles away. We don’t need to house a chainsaw of our own. My mother-in-law makes furniture (among other amazing things) as a hobby. Her wood-working tools add value to her life, but they are unnecessary for us to own. Eric just borrows some wood cutting, sanding contraption for a day or so if need be. Perfect.
- Kid Stuff-Go Here.